Yoga for Your Health
The Many Benefits of Yoga:
When people try to improve their health, the most common focuses are diet and exercise. A good diet and regular exercise are necessary for your health but it is not the only thing you need. Yoga allows you to exercise, heal your body from the inside out, enlighten your mind, and reduce your stress level, increase focus, helps you set priorities, improve your physical and emotional balance, and increase your flexibility. Such a wide range of benefits is not found easily.
Things to Consider Before Starting Yoga:
When you take a yoga class it is almost like entering another reality. All you need is a mat, a towel and a mind set to experience it to your fullest. While some classes are divided by levels, others combine a wide range of ability levels. Yoga moves are easily adapted to your individual ability level. This makes it the perfect form of exercise for those trying to start or get back in shape. By the same token Yoga can be one of the most demanding forms of exercise around if you are looking for more of a workout.
It is important for you to decide the main reasons you want to do Yoga in order to find a style, teacher and class that will fit your purposes and level. Here are some common health problems and how practicing Yoga can be of great benefit.
Yoga for Medical Conditions:
- Depression and Anxiety: When a person becomes depressed one of the first symptoms are lack of energy and movement. Yoga can be introduced slowly and with little demand on the body initially. Look for a class that incorporates periods of meditation before, during and after class. Anxiety makes us function at an elevated state for long periods of time. Yoga allows for a transition to a more relaxed state of being allowing us to release stress from our bodies.
- Cardiac Rehab: Studies have shown that yoga reduces blood pressure and anxiety which are both very beneficial for the cardiac patient. Since many cardiac patients’ are male and not likely to seek out yoga some rehab programs incorporate it without actually using the word yoga. It is important to speak to your cardiologist before starting any exercises on your own.
- Orthopedic Conditions: Physical therapy is often used to prevent the need for surgery and to help patients recover from surgery. Unfortunately, insurances do not always pay for this treatment and when they do it is only for a short period of time. Patients need something they can do for a long time to maintain the improvements they achieved with the physical therapy. Yoga can fit the bill for this need. It is also ideal for some elderly patients since it can help build bone mass while putting limited amounts of stress on the body. Again you need to discuss this with your doctor before you start.
The level of the classes you take should be carefully considered. If you attend a class too difficult or too easy for your abilities you can easily become frustrated or even get injured. The goal is to maximize the positive effects of yoga and have no draw backs.
To Your Health:
There are many more medical benefits than are covered in this article. The purpose here is to open your mind to the potential benefits yoga can have for your life. Most Yoga Studios are very eager to help you find the right class for you. So go ahead take your first yoga class, look better, feel better, lower your stress level and get healthier!