If you have experienced some yoga in the past then you might have felt some of the health benefits of yoga poses such as relaxation, improvement in balance and posture, noticing our breath flow throughout the day. If you are new to yoga or aren’t sure if it’s good for you and don’t know whether you will like it or not, then I would like to tell you about a few great benefits you can get from practicing yoga (even if you practice as little as 10 minutes a day).
In the past, there weren’t many researchers regarding the health benefits of yoga poses, but as of today more and more researchers are wanting to prove (to those how need proof) that yoga is great for our mental and physical health. In this article, I tried to find some well-written research and articles about some health benefits that everyone can enjoy while practicing yoga.
A Better Life Quality – Thanks to Yoga
When I do yoga I always feel calm and relaxed, it’s no wonder many others feel the same because of the whole flow of yoga while concentrating on the breath and posture gives your mind a positive thing to concentrate instead of other daily thoughts. Yoga encourages us to slow down our breath and pay attention to the present moment.
Catherine Woodyard wrote an article about the effects of yoga and how it can create a better life quality for whoever practices it. She mentions how yoga can significantly improve one’s mental heath.
Mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, stress, and insomnia are among the most common reasons for individuals to seek treatment with complementary therapies such as yoga. Yoga encourages one to relax, slow the breath and focus on the present, shifting the balance from the sympathetic nervous system and the flight-or-fight response to the parasympathetic system and the relaxation response.
She also writes about how flexibility is probably one of the most obvious benefits of yoga, although it is not a goal one should try to reach while practicing yoga, one can definitely achieve great flexibility by practicing daily (or even every other day).
With continued practice comes a gradual loosening of the muscles and connective tissues surrounding the bones and joints; this is thought to be one reason that yoga is associated with reduced aches and pains.
In order to maintain a healthy life we need to do some sort of exercise, even a 30-minute walk is a great way to get our body moving and blood flowing. Yoga is similar to many other exercises in the fact that in order to keep a healthy body for a long time we need to practice or exercise in some way regularly.
Without proper sustenance, neglected areas of cartilage will eventually wear out and expose the underlying bone. Numerous studies have shown that asana, meditation or a combination of the two reduced pain in people with arthritis, Carpel Tunnel syndrome, back pain and other chronic conditions.
In an article published by Frontiers In Psychiatry they examining the effects of yoga on depression. One of the studies was of depression in 60 alcohol dependents males (mean age of approximately 35 years).
Vedamurthachar et al. demonstrated that subjects undergoing de-addiction treatment had a statistically significant reduction in their scores on the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), and concurrent reduction in serum cortisol levels when they received Sudarshan Kriya yoga (SKY) compared to their counterparts receiving routine inpatient care (Vedamurthachar et al., 2006).
Yoga and Cancer
Yoga is a great way to relax and appreciate the present moment, it can boost the immune system while strengthening the body. It’s a great balanced way to help gain back the motion and flexibility of the body.
While yoga is not a cure for a cancer, nor a definitive way of preventing it, yoga increases physical, emotional and spiritual wellness, and brings about a certain peace, of which many cancer patients desire. (Catherine Woodyard).
More Research Is Needed
There is still a wide demand of research regarding the health benefits of yoga. Most of us are skeptical by nature and many people won’t consider even trying yoga unless someone proves to them that it is worth their time.
Given the growing popularity of yoga, it would be important for the field to attempt to replicate and extend these findings in larger, multi-center, randomized, blinded (at least single blinded) studies with the control group receiving alternative treatments…
My Personal Yoga Benefit
When I do my yoga routine I know how beneficial yoga can be, and I also know how impatient I can get someties while I’m in certain poses. Yoga helps me calm down and relax because usually my mind is in a constant ‘what’s next’ mode, and it’s so important sometimes to enjoy the moment, SMILE and enjoy life.
I think that many people are a little bit afraid to approach yoga with all kinds of excuses, the best excuse of all, and the one I used the most was “I’m not flexible enough to do yoga”. Well, now I know that this is a lame excuse because I learned that yoga is all about my personal experience and my own body.
Yoga can improve our lives in so many other aspects other than improving our flexibility and I personally think that the most important benefit of it all is learning to LOVE my own body and respecting it for what it is. Not trying to go over my limits and not going crazy with all kinds of complicated postures, Simply accepting my body for what it is and thanking it for being healthy and able to practice any yoga pose that I want.
Have you ever tried yoga before? What is the best benefit yoga gave you?
I would love to read and respond to your comments here below.