Yoga is much more than simply twisting your body in impossible poses. It is a meeting of mind and body that together give you the health benefits of mindful exercise.
With tremendous positive effects such as normalisation of blood pressure, reducing stress, weight loss and cholesterol control, yoga has become a global favourite form of exercise. Today, Ms. Sunita Pathania – Sr. Registered Dietician and Diabetes Educator, Healthy Living Diet Clinic, Mumbai, presents the top 10 benefits of yoga…
Benefits of Yoga # 1: Yoga for pregnancy
If you are pregnant, and want to stay fit, then you should practice yoga daily. Practicing yoga during pregnancy makes you strong overall. Regular practice of yoga helps ease tiredness, releases tension, increases flexibility by stretching of the muscles, offers internal benefits like good circulation, digestion, respiration and regulation of the nervous system. Besides, it also helps in relieving pregnancy ailments like insomnia, lower back pain, leg-cramping and digestive upsets. But, to avoid complications, it is recommended that you consult your doctor before practicing yoga.
Benefits of Yoga # 2: Mental peace
Yoga’s overall emphasis on breathing and other balancing asanas help in harmonising both the sides of the brain and restores balance. This also makes us utilize both the sides of our brain and further enhances the internal communication, which we often fail to use during our daily tasks. By practicing yoga you can find a state of balance between your thinking brain and creative brain.
Benefits of Yoga # 3: Boosts overall health
Good health is not a mere absence of disease, in fact it is more of a balance between your mind and emotions as well. Practicing yoga, helps in achieving total fitness, it helps you to stay away from various diseases and makes you dynamic, joyful and enthusiastic.
Benefits of Yoga # 4: Good circulation
With the combination of various yoga poses and breathing techniques, yoga also aides in proper blood circulation in your body. Due to proper blood circulation in the body, oxygen and other nutrients are better transported in the body which results in healthy organs and glowing skin.
Benefits of Yoga # 5: Yoga for flat stomach
Before reading about how yoga helps with a flat stomach, you must know that no ‘single’ exercise can help you get a flat stomach. If anyone promises you a flat stomach with a low-tempo, zero core work, exercise that doesn’t help you lose excess fat from all over the body, then you need to consult another expert.
In yoga, various asanas like Naukasana, Ushtrasana and basic crunches will help you tone an already flat stomach, if practiced daily. Practicing yoga and following a proper diet will help tone down your stomach.
Benefits of Yoga # 6: Healthy Heart
Various asanas wherein you hold your breath for a short time help improve the fitness of your heart and arteries. Yoga helps in proper blood circulation, which prevents blood clogging and hence gives you a healthy heart.
Benefits of Yoga # 7: Prevents pains and aches
As yoga improves flexibility and strength it also helps in preventing back pains and joint pains. Sunita says – people who have a desk job and drive for a long time should practice yoga daily, as it helps to relieve the spinal compression and spinal tightness. Besides, it also helps in improving your structure which further helps in preventing various pains caused due to bad posture.
Benefits of Yoga # 8: Better breathing
Due to various deep and slow breathing techniques, which yoga involves, it improves the capacity of your lungs and abdominal cavity. This further enhances your daily performance and endurance training. The deep breathing also stimulates relaxation and helps you recover from physical and mental stress.
Benefits of Yoga # 9: Improves balance
With poor posture, we lose the ability to balance as we age. This is due to different aspects of sedentary living that involves little to no core engagement on a daily basis. This results in falls, fractures, poor back health, and many other issues. Yoga can help you regain this lost balance and core control. Yoga improves your sense of balance by fine tuning your strength and flexibility. This improvement also aids in making your brain work fast and makes you more able to control your impulses.
Benefits of Yoga # 10: Stress reduction
Yoga helps in relieving stress. When you practice yoga after a hectic schedule, you will notice that all your stresses will melt down. Of course, this does not mean that yoga is the only form of exercise that alleviates stress. Any exercise, when practised dilligently with focus and correct form and breathing technique, will help you relieve stress.