The 7 most incredible health benefits of yoga
Yoga. It’s probably the oldest exercise routine in the world. Forget CrossFit, Boxercise and that Jane Fonda VHS. Yoga, in its oldest forms, is thought to have existed in India for at least six thousand years.
Now there are a whole host of reasons why this ancient eastern practice has survived for so long but most people attribute this to the feeling of deep tranquillity that many people feel is unique to the practice of yoga.
Yoga, rightly, is synonymous with ideas of meditation & wellness. Some people believe that it can help you achieve the mind-body equilibrium that is so fleeting in our hectic modern world.
What you probably didn’t know is that September is the official Yoga awareness month. Now more than ever there is no excuse not to try. From hot yoga to bikram yoga to hatha yoga, it has never been so popular and you can even do it online.
So as the leaves start to turn and summer’s heat finally relents we think that there is no better time to get outdoors and find your own nirvana.
1. Aches and pains
Yoga is fast becoming one of the most promising treatments for the relief of chronic pain. Studies from UCLA have shown that regular yoga sessions can be useful in relieving pain for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis.
The meditative benefits of yoga have been lauded since ancient times. More recently however, scientists have begun to see yoga as a viable treatment for anxiety and depression. In fact the practice of yoga activity has been shown to light up the same part of the brain as that associated with positive moods.
3. Get some rest
Sleep. It doesn’t matter how exciting your life is, the prospect of a full nights sleep is still one of the most enticing things in the world. Yoga relaxes the body and can bring the heart rate down, putting you in the perfect state to drift off… bliss.
4. It’s good for your heart
Ask anyone with high blood pressure – stress can make your body feel like you are stepping off a rollercoaster. The feelings of relaxation that are common with yoga can bring your heart rate down and may help bring your blood pressure down too.
5. Get your sweat on
While taking it slow is perfect for getting some much needed R&R, yoga is a serious work out. Yoga, like swimming, is a workout for your entire body and uses muscles you’ve forgotten you even had. Yoga is no longer the sole domain of bearded hippies. In fact gyms around the world are catching on and offering classes such as ‘hot yoga’, ‘power yoga’ and ‘naked yoga’… ooh la la.
6. Let’s talk about…
Sex! Speaking of naked yoga – studies continue to show that yoga can have a positive impact on your sex life. And no, it’s not all about flexibility… although we’re sure that helps. In fact, yoga helps by improving your blood flow through the body and many yoga enthusiasts believe it helps make them more comfortable and confident with their body
7. A Whole New World
‘Yogis’ (as they like to be called) are part of a worldwide community that is growing every single day. It has never ever been more popular to be a yogi and people practicing yoga seem to bond over shared experiences and create new friendships.