The benefits of yoga for your body are endless. It improves your aches and pains. It keeps the doctor away. It improves your overall health.
Many people are frightened of trying yoga for fear of it being too hard. Do not fear. As with any exercise program, do what is right for your body. There are beginners’ classes and there are more advanced classes. It’s not a competition to keep up with anyone else.
1. Yoga improves your aches and pains
Quite often, the cause of a lot of pain can be relieved by stretching and exercising. Strengthen the muscles so they can support your bones. Stretch your body.
2. It improves your flexibility
Over time, you will notice your flexibility improving. Aches and pains will start to disappear. Tight hips can strain the knee and tight hamstrings can cause back pain. This is all due to improper alignment caused by the tightness. The gentle stretching in yoga can help to relieve this.
3. It improves your strength – both mentally and physically
Holding different yoga poses (asanas) helps to not only improve your physical strength (and gives your muscles the chance to do their job properly), it also helps to improve your mental strength. The mind will always give up before the body does. Yoga will strengthen it.
4. It will improve your balance
This is particularly important for everyone as they age, but it can apply to anyone of any age. Taking part in regular yoga practice will see an improvement in your balance making you more confident on your feet, resulting in less falls.
5. It improves your cardio vascular fitness
Regular yoga practice lowers the resting heart rate, increases endurance and improves the maximum uptake of oxygen during exercise. You will feel fitter.
6. It will improve your breathing
The breath (Prana) is considered the universal life force in yoga – a vital energy. Ayama means to ‘extend or draw out’. Pranayama means extension of the breath. This slow, deep and controlled breathing practise helps to improve your lung capacity.
Chances are, yoga will be challenging to start with, but if you continue to practice regularly and do what’s right for your body (remember, it is not a competition) the benefits of feeling happier, having stronger bones, boosted immunity, lower blood pressure, better sleep and better focus, along with all of the above, will far outweigh anything else.