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Does Yoga Really Have Any Health Benefits?

June 1, 2018
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What is Yoga?

Yoga is an ancient Indian practice that aligns one’s mind and body, through poses, asanas, breathing exercises and meditation. Derived from the Sanskrit word, “Yuji” – meaning union or yoke, practicing yoga offers several benefits for both physical and mental health.

What are the Health Benefits of Yoga?

Yoga offers a diverse range of health benefits. Some of these are visible within a few classes, while others happen after a few months of practicing yoga.

  • More energy to carry out daily tasks
  • Lower stress levels
  • Enhanced blood circulation
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Better cardiovascular endurance
  • Improvement in the functioning of internal organs and digestive health
  • Increase in metabolic levels
  • Enhanced immunity
  • Improved sexuality and self-confidence
  • Better Sleep

What are the Long-term Health Benefits of Yoga?

Practicing yoga regularly offers a wide range of health benefits and keeps various lifestyle illnesses at bay. Here are a few long-term health benefits of yoga practice.

Improves Flexibility Practicing yoga three times a week is known to enhance flexibility levels in individuals of all ages.
Lowers Anxiety and Depression While yoga lifts up one’s mood instantly, the long-term effects like reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety occur after 90 days of practice.
Stronger Immune System Practicing yoga causes internal cellular level changes to the immune system over the long term, thereby improving the body’s defense mechanism.
Stronger Bones Practicing yoga for just 12 minutes a day helps to improve bone density and reduce bone loss.
Good for the Heart Yoga when practiced over the years, helps to minimize the implications of cardio diseases, by lowering cholesterol levels, and helps to keep blood pressure under check.
Weight Management Yoga asanas, when practiced regularly, improve the metabolic rate of the body, thereby aiding in weight management.

What are the Emotional Health Benefits of Yoga?

Yoga creates a strong connection between the mind and body, thereby improving one’s emotional health benefits.

  1. Uplifts mood and increases the energy levels of the body
  2. Reduces stress and anxiety
  3. Fights depression
  4. Paves the way for self-acceptance and builds self-confidence
  5. Helps to control one’s temper, by building self-control
  6. Adds a positive outlook to life
  7. Better concentration and enhanced memory
  8. Improved social skills
  9. Adds tranquility and calmness to your mind, while dealing with the mounting pressures of urban life

 

Does Yoga Make for a Good Workout?

Yes. It depends on the type of yoga techniques you choose. For instance, practices like Iyengar and Hatha yoga are slow and are meant to soothe, relax and improve the flexibility of your body. While other methods, like Bikram and Power Yoga, are vigorous and make for a good workout.

What are the Target Areas Toned by Yoga?

Cores Poses like boat pose and side planks help you target every core muscles giving you flat abs and toned stomach.
Arms With yoga you can tone your arms with your own body, without using any external weights or machines. Poses like the crane pose, cow pose, and plank are challenging for your arms as they make use of your full body weight.
Legs Yoga asanas and poses work on all parts of your legs including thighs, hips, and quadriceps.
Glutes Yoga moves like bridges, warrior poses and squats help to scult and tone.
Back Yoga is one of the best methods to relieve a sore back. The downward facing dog, cat pose, cow pose and child pose give your back muscles a good stretch.

 

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