By Diana Sanchez, Staff Writer
Photo by Erik Brolin on Unsplash
If you’ve been wondering if yoga is right for you, you’ve come to the right place.
My first introduction to yoga came from my college roommate who loved it. I was overweight in college so I was open to working out, but yoga? I really wasn’t sold. Not at first. I felt like I should be running or doing something that could really burn some calories. But she was insistent and I was trying to make friends my freshman year, so I went along.
What I found after taking my Hatha yoga class for a few weeks was that while I was not burning a crazy amount of calories, I was definitely seeing significant improvement in my overall flexibility and my mental health. Also, I was taking it as a college course so it gave my GPA a very small boost - and what college freshman suddenly finding herself with all the freedom in the world doesn’t need that?
Over 10 years post-college, I’ve found that there are many more benefits to practicing yoga than I ever knew.
Benefits from Yoga
Great for Beginners
Due to the variety of yoga classes available, beginners are very welcome. Whatever your fitness level, you can join almost any yoga class because there are modified poses depending on the level of availability, so you can keep up - at your own pace.
Improves Your Flexibility
This is an obvious benefit but did you know that inflexibility can lead to aches and pains? These aches and pains, like backaches and knee troubles, for instance, do not have to stay with you. When you improve your flexibility your muscles become looser and have less tension, allowing you to eliminate the daily pains your body suffers through.
Increased Muscle Strength
Strong muscles are important for maintaining your overall health, especially as you age. When you increase your muscle strength, your tendons increase in thickness too, which lowers your risks of injury in daily life. Stronger muscles can also protect you from conditions like arthritis and can also increase your bone density, lowering your risk for osteoporosis.
Increases Your Blood Flow
The relaxation movements in yoga help improve your blood flow which is key to staying healthy.
Good blood circulation is essential for fighting off diseases and keeping your organs in the best working order. Bad blood circulation, on the other hand, can lead to a lack of energy, an inability to concentrate, problems with memory, and even hair loss for women.
Yoga combines breathing exercises with physical movements and meditation (check out our meditation blog here), and with all of that combined, yoga can certainly help you manage and reduce your stress levels.
If you’d like to improve your physical, mental, and even spiritual well-being, there are a million reasons why yoga would be perfect for you. It’s so easy nowadays to find free yoga workouts on YouTube - and while we are on the subject, have you checked out Lifestyle Curves’ YouTube channel yet? You should! It has a lot of important information about weight loss and waist training.
Did you decide to give yoga a try? Please share your thoughts below! I love hearing from you.