Benefits of Yoga
The health and fitness benefits of yoga have long been reported by practitioners and are now being confirmed by scientific research. Give yoga a try and discover what it can do for Your mind, body & breath.
STRESS RELIEF: Yoga reduces the physical effects of stress on the body. By encouraging relaxation, yoga helps to lower the levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Related benefits include lowering blood pressure and heart rate, improving digestion and boosting the immune system as well as easing symptoms of conditions such as anxiety, depression, fatigue, asthma and insomnia.
PAIN RELIEF: Yoga can ease pain. Studies have demonstrated that practicing yoga asanas (postures), meditation or a combination of the two, reduced pain for people with conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, auto-immune diseases and hypertension as well as arthritis, back and neck pain and other chronic conditions. Some practitioners report that even emotional pain can be eased through the practice of yoga.
BETTER BREATHING: Yoga teaches people to take slower, deeper breaths. This helps to improve lung function, trigger the body’s relaxation response and increase the amount of oxygen available to the body.
FLEXIBILITY: Yoga helps to improve flexibility and mobility, increasing range of movement and reducing aches and pains. Many people can’t touch their toes during their first yoga class. Gradually they begin to use the correct muscles. Over time, the ligaments, tendons and muscles lengthen, increasing elasticity, making more poses possible. Yoga also helps to improve body alignment resulting in better posture and helping to relieve back, neck, joint and muscle problems.
INCREASED STRENGTH: Yoga asanas (postures) use every muscle in the body, helping to increase strength literally from head to toe. And, while these postures strengthen the body, they also provide an additional benefit of helping to relieve muscular tension.
WEIGHT MANAGEMENT: Yoga (even less vigorous styles) can aid weight control efforts by reducing the cortisol levels as well as by burning excess calories and reducing stress. Yoga also encourages healthy eating habits and provides a heightened sense of well being and self esteem.
IMPROVED CIRCULATION: Yoga helps to improve circulation and, as a result of various poses, more efficiently moves oxygenated blood to the body’s cells.
CARDIOVASCULAR CONDITIONING: Even gentle yoga practice can provide benefits by lowering resting heart rate, increasing endurance and improving oxygen uptake during exercise.
FOCUS ON THE PRESENT: Yoga helps us to focus on the present, to become more aware and to help create mind body health. It opens the way to improved concentration, coordination, reaction time and memory.
INNER PEACE: The meditative aspects of yoga help many to reach a deeper, more spiritual and more satisfying place in their lives. Many who begin to practice for other reasons have reported this to be a key reason that yoga has become an essential part of their daily lives.
SELF STUDY: When you learn more about yourself through your body, you view and react to the world in new ways.
EMOTIONAL BALANCE: Brings emotional and mental stability, and regulates the glandular system.
COMMUNITY: Meet new friends !
IMPROVED CIRCULATION: Yoga helps to improve circulation by efficiently moving oxygenated blood to the body’s cells.
CARDIOVASCULAR CONDITIONING : Even a gentle yoga practice can provide cardiovascular benefits by lowering resting heart rate, increasing endurance and improving oxygen uptake during exercise.
Q & A
Q: How is yoga different then other kinds of fitness?
A: Yoga is unique because we connect the movement of the body and the fluctuations of the mind to the rhythm of our breath. Connecting the mind, body and breath helps us to direct our intention inward. Through this process of inward attention, we learn to recognize our habitual thought patterns without labeling them, judging them, or trying to change them. We become more aware of our experiences from moment to moment. The awareness that we cultivate is what makes yoga a practice, rather then a task or a goal to be completed. Your body will most likely become much more flexible by doing yoga, and so will your mind.
Q: Is yoga a religion?
A: Yoga is absolutely NOT a religion. It is a philosophy that began in India an estimated 5,000 years ago. It is also not necessary to surrender your own religious beliefs to practice yoga. The quick answer is: Instead of undermining your personal faith, Yoga can actually deepen it.
Q: I’m not flexible, can I do yoga?
A: YES! You are a perfect candidate for yoga. Many people think that they need to be flexible to begin yoga, but that's a little bit like thinking that you need to be able to play tennis in order to take tennis lessons. Come as you are and you will find that yoga practice will help you become more flexible.
Q: What if I cannot do a certain yoga pose?
A: We will never embarrass or ridicule you if you cannot do a certain posture. We will modify or find one that works for your body and skill. We create a safe environment where each student learns and absorbs at an individual level.
Q: What do I Wear?
A: Wear comfortable exercise clothing that are not too baggy so your instructor may see misalignments. You will practice in bare feet.
Q: I have a health challenge. Can I STILL DO yoga.
A: The therapy of yoga movement often benefits physical conditions. Many students find health improves as a result of improved alignment, flexibility or strength. Discuss any issues of health with your medical professional and your yoga instructor prior to starting your class.
Q: Do I need special equipment for yoga practice?
A: No, all you need is a non-slip yoga mat and a blanket.
Q: Is yoga just for women?
A: Absolutely NOT, men and women benefit equally from yoga practices. Yoga is accessible to everyone.