I’ve heard so many positive things about yoga and it has always intrigued me, yet I always find an excuse why I can’t start practicing it. Usually I blame it on the fact that my schedule doesn’t allow for a yoga class. But as I learn more about yoga, I decided that it’s time to carve out time to at least give yoga a good try to see if I want to incorporate it into my life.
What helped me make my decision to challenge myself to learn yoga is the research I did on the many benefits yoga has to offer. I know people who love yoga and I’ve heard it’s wonderful for the body and soul, but I wanted to know the facts. So today I invite you to read and consider the 6 benefits of yoga that inspired me to try doing yoga.
6 Benefits of Yoga
Yoga is a very ancient discipline born in India thousands of years ago in order to improve the life of practitioners both physically and, above all, spiritual. It is no coincidence that the word “yoga” means “union.” Although it is a real physical activity to get you into shape, yoga strongly a spiritual discipline. It’s also a discipline that everyone can practice regardless of fitness, age, and sex.
1. Yoga is an excellent physical activity
Yoga is a physical activity that allows everyone, without exclusion, to start their body and work on all or only on some parts of it. You do not need to be a pro, just follow the movements that suit your body to benefit from yoga.
2. Helps to use breath in the best way
Depending on the type of yoga you decide to practice you will do more or less breathing exercises that will allow you, right away, to learn to breathe in a different, deeper and less impulsive way. Learning to breathe better means getting more air into our body and, above all, relaxing longer and longer.
3. Yoga helps you sleep better
Physical activity generally helps you sleep better, but yoga is said to be the activity that most helps in this sense.
There are positions designed specifically for relaxation that should be practiced before going to bed, but in general yoga helps you rest better because it moves all the body’s muscles in a way that seems passive to us but that is actually just sweeter. You may not feel fatigue during practice, but your body will surely feel it when you sleep and relax. So get ready for a better night’s sleep.
This is actually the benefit that sealed the deal for me. I’m really looking forward to learning to better relax and sleeping better!
4. It is ideal for posture
Breathing and stretching exercises improves posture and the back. This is another really important benefit for me because I spend long work days sitting. I believe my back will thank me as I start doing yoga.
5. Increases concentration and psychological resistance
Yoga is an exercise in concentration because you have to constantly remember positions and because if you are distracted, you lose the connection between body and mind necessary to complete the sequences. Practice continually challenges you and increases your ability to concentrate and think only about what you are doing when you are doing it. The result? A higher ability to concentrate even in everyday life, and the ability to stay focused on the moment.
6. You can do yoga at any time
Unlike many other activities, yoga can be practiced at any time: in the morning, at lunchtime, after work, in the evening or at any other convenient time. We do not have to spend hours and hours doing yoga, but we can decide for ourselves what kind of routine to follow and how much to devote to our practice. And yoga can be done at home with basic equipment.
Start Practicing Yoga at Home – FOR FREE!
I really want to start practicing yoga in a gentle and relaxed way at least three times per week. I will start by performing some basic asanas, adding a little bit of meditation, and trying to keep things consistent and persistent.
I will start by watching some YouTube videos to get the yoga foundation and to start exploring and experiencing this discipline. There are many different channels from certified yoga teachers, but I decided I like Yoga with Adriene who seems to be the best free yoga source online. The best thing is I can learn poses in the comfort of my own home, for FREE!
Here’s an example of one of the MANY videos by Adriene. This video is Day 1 of her 30 Days of Yoga and is perfect for beginners. She encourages you to use this DAY 1 practice to take stock, check in with the body and mind. Begin the practice of slowing down, noticing, stretching and moving with ease.
To help me keep my commitment, I’ve made my intention clear with three friends who are also going to do this yoga challenge. We’re going to check in with each other every Sunday night. I will keep you updated with my progress and my own experiences. We are into this together! To learn more about yoga, check out this helpful article about yoga. Also, read about practical things that can be learned through yoga.
UPDATE: It’s been about 1 month and I can honestly say I thoroughly enjoy yoga. Adriene is my best online friend! On average, I do one of her 20-30 minute videos about 3 times per week. On the days that I don’t formally watch the video, I find myself doing some of the stretches because they really feel good.
The best thing about doing yoga is the slowing down of my mind. It has a meditative aspect that is very calming yet energizing. I’m a little surprised about how good yoga really is for the mind, but I’m loving it!
I’ve also found that I get annoyed with interruptions, so I now make sure my husband knows to give me my 30 minutes of me-time without even walking into the room where I am.
If you don’t already, I recommend you give yoga a try. What’s the worst thing that can happen? There’s a really good chance you might find something that will benefit your mind, body, and soul.
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