You need a break! When was the last time you did absolutely nothing? I’m talking about the perfect feeling of absolute calmness, relaxation, forgetfulness and peace during ‘savasana’ pose every after the rigors of yoga practice. Keep reading to find out reasons why you should do yoga.
You probably have been caught up with hectic schedule, meeting deadlines and fast-pace lifestyle that you tend to forget to breathe and be at peace with yourself. You’re probably too occupied with the responsibilities at work or home that you can’t even afford to take care of yourself. Whatever your reasons are, there are just no excuses when it comes to taking care of your health and fitness. Again, no excuses!
Yoga is a powerful mental and physical experience.
Whether you want to achieve a fitness goal or just want to have a change in lifestyle, practicing yoga has proven to have brought many benefits to every practitioner. It’s no wonder why this practice has been alive since time immemorial. This ancient practice that originated in India thousands of years ago is a powerful experience for both our body and mind.
Yoga is for everyone.
Many people have developed a common misconception that yoga is only for the flexible and athletic. You’re wrong! Every person of different size, shape, and age can definitely do yoga. Just because someone is slimmer than the other doesn’t guarantee him or her to have more potential in yoga and vice versa. I myself have attended yoga classes as a beginner and was amazed at the sight of a chubbier woman who was able to do a headstand. It’s never the size, it’s the commitment!
So, why yoga?
There are countless reasons why you should do yoga. It provides us with holistic benefits – physical, mental, emotional and even spiritual. Below is a list of reasons why you should do yoga and how they could possibly change your life.
1. Yoga is good for your mental health.
Owing to the demanding lifestyle, it may only seem common nowadays to experience mixed feelings of anger, sadness, frustration and anxiety. These mixed emotions are what cause people to become stressed. While others underestimate the severity of family or work-related stress, it may lead to more serious mental issues like depression. Therefore, taking care of our mental health is crucial. A 2010 study found that yoga could improve mood and increases the levels of gamma-aminobutyric (GABA) in the brain. Lower GABA levels are linked to depression and anxiety disorders. The study even suggests that yoga could be used as therapy for people experiencing certain mental disorders. This is all the more reason why you should do yoga.
2. Yoga is good for your heart.
While there are many factors resulting to heart diseases like smoking and heredity, having a healthy lifestyle may lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Another reason why you should do yoga is its ability to lower cholesterol, blood sugar levels and high blood pressure which are factors that lead to heart attack. Additionally, it could be beneficial to people suffering from diabetes as it allows them to maintain their blood sugar levels.
3. Yoga relieves chronic body pain.
Practicing yoga as a beginner might give you a little uncomfortable feeling and soreness in some parts of your body. Relax! This isn’t exactly a bad thing. You are only experiencing muscle soreness. This is nothing compared to the chronic body pain that some of you might be experiencing. If you are one of those who have been constantly having chronic body pain, here is another reason why should do yoga.
According to Harvard Medical School, practicing yoga helps relieve chronic body pain such as arthritis, back pain, fibromyalgia, migraine and others. Another study in 2007 found that there is a significant decline in the frequency of migraine headache in patients treated with yoga for three months.
4. Yoga improves your flexibility and balance.
Flexibility and balance are not pre-requisites to practicing yoga. We practice yoga to improve our flexibility and balance. This ancient practice has proven to help improve flexibility by letting you do many challenging poses. If you are not so flexible to begin with, fret not as there are plenty of ways to modify these poses. This practice will also test your balance over time as you progress to more challenging poses and holding it for longer period.
5. Yoga gives you a better sleep.
Another important reason why you should do yoga is the chance to get better sleep. You’re probably one of those who struggle to fall asleep at night. I myself used to suffer from insomnia at night, not until I decided to change my lifestyle. Starting yoga has not only strengthened my body, but also improved my mood and helped me get better sleep. I am a living testament to the benefits of yoga indeed. Researchers found that practicing yoga, including relaxation and meditation, reduces cognitive and physiological arousal in people suffering from chronic insomnia.
6. Yoga improves your sex performance.
Yes! That’s right. Practicing yoga increases the blood flow to the genital area which results to higher arousal in men and women. Studies found that practicing yoga improves sex drive, performance, orgasm and satisfaction. Plus, your improved flexibility might also allow you to explore daring sex positions!
All in all, there are many benefits to practicing yoga. While there are many other forms of exercise that you can explore as well, yoga promises holistic benefits to your well-being.