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Why yoga is great for physical and mental health

May, 2021

When you think of working out and exercising, yoga doesn’t often come into our heads straight away.

Downward-facing dog and mountain poses aren’t usually associated with exercises and achieving your goals, whatever they might be. We are more likely to think of things such as walking, running, and hitting the gym to lift some weights.

However, yoga can be incredibly beneficial to both your physical and mental health and more people are now turning to yoga to improve their fitness and mindset.

Let’s find out what yoga actually is, and how it can contribute to your overall physical and mental wellbeing.

What is yoga?

No doubt you will have heard of yoga before, but what actually is it?

Yoga has been around for a long time – about 5000 years, in fact! – and there are a number of different disciplines. It consists of different postures and techniques that contribute to positive mental health and increased physical movement. There is also a big focus on breathing and many people find it incredibly relaxing.

You don’t need to be particularly flexible to start yoga, and it is ideal for beginners and more experienced fitness enthusiasts alike.

Physical benefits of yoga

The different movements and postures that are involved in yoga have many physical benefits.

This includes increased flexibility as well as muscle strength. Many people who are recovering from certain injuries find yoga a good way to enhance overall movement and aid recovery. Certain conditions such as arthritis can be alleviated by practicing yoga.

Yoga can also help to boost your balance and it has been shown as a contributor to weight loss when used alongside things such as creating a calorie deficit, and taking part in other forms of exercise.

Mental health benefits of yoga

Alongside the physical benefits of yoga, it can have a positive impact on your mental health as well.

One of the main reasons people have practiced yoga for thousands of years is down to its emphasis on spiritual wellbeing and mindfulness. It can be a very relaxing form of exercise and is a form of meditation that can potentially help you deal with stress, anxiety, and other mental health issues.

A large number of people use yoga as a coping mechanism. As a way to start your morning, yoga can put you into a positive mindset, and likewise, if you have had a particularly stressful day, yoga is perfect for relieving stress.

Why yoga is great for physical and mental health

Yoga is practiced by people of all ages, and it has been found to be very effective in exercise for over 60s.

Regardless of your age or physical ability, there are yoga movements and techniques that can work for you.

It contributes to both positive physical and mental wellbeing. Many people use yoga alongside more rigorous and demanding forms of exercise as a way to relax, take time out, but also to improve physical health.

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