I had always loved Yoga and have remained a huge follower.
Although, even after knowing how much necessary Yoga has been for me, my laziness never allowed making it a mandatory part of my routine.
My father taught me some basic asanas and pranayams when I was a kid. Since then I started developing a little interest in Yoga. Flexibility was the biggest attraction. But I haven’t made yoga a habit until last year, after which my urge to learn and follow the basics of Yoga grew.
Yoga, in simple words, is connecting your Physical Self with Inner Self. Its origin lies with ancient India and Hinduism. The depth in seeking knowledge for Yoga knows no limits. Gradually, Yoga developed a variety of techniques, forms, and meanings as per different followers and preachers.
People practice Yoga for several reasons. Some do it for physical strength, some for empowering their mental capacities and some follow it for their spiritual growth. This proves that Yoga is not just a set of physical exercises but it’s a practice beyond our imaginations.
A lifestyle like present days, where work involves more of mental labour rather than physical labour, demands Yoga or any other kind of workout. Our lives seem to confine to a technologically driven world nowadays. We have shelled ourselves in this virtual world. This has limited our vision and inner strengths.
Though people are now getting aware of how important is their physical, as well as mental health, to make their rest of life run at a steady pace.
Recent years have seen a tremendous increase in awareness regarding physical fitness as a consequence of poor health conditions of people around the world. The reasons are;
- Continuous mental labour at work.
- Increased stress level due to complicated lifestyle.
- No self-care time.
- Unhealthy food habits
- No proper routine (including sleep deprivation/excessive sleep)
- Detachment from nature
Why Yoga is a must?
WHO in their Health Report (2001 data) estimated that one in four people in the world will be affected by mental and neurological disorders at some point (quoting the exact estimate from the report). In recent statistics, one in 6-7 billion people has one or more mental health troubles defined by WHO. Apart from this, physical inactiveness is also a critical concern worldwide.
Yoga has emerged as a great therapy for physical as well as mental well being. The positive results and tremendous health improvements witnessed by people is the reason why Yoga has gained huge popularity.
I have listed a few amazing benefits below, which will surely make you re-think about your procrastinated Yoga plans.
Yoga asanas include two things; holding the poses and repeating them. This helps in strengthening our muscles as well as keeping us physically fit. You just need a proper yoga instructor and the right set of exercises for your body type.
It has been observed that a Yoga person is physically and mentally stronger than the ones who don’t do it. It also improves our body posture and keeps us in shape.
Do not judge a thin person who does Yoga, for his strength and also do not judge an overweighing person for his flexibility.
Some of the asanas for physical fitness are Setu Bandhaasana, Uttanaasana, Paschimottanaasan & Dhanuraasana.
Yoga is known for both mental & physical strength rather than providing just physical strength. Pranayams like Narishodhan, Anolom Vilom help to increase concentration and focus. Even asanas like Sarvangasana ensure sufficient blood circulation to the brain which helps in increasing its power.
It’s good for children as it develops a good memory and a powerful brain.
From cleansing our nerves to detoxification, proper blood circulation and calming us during stress; Yogasanas play a vital role in strengthening our brain. For maintaining mental health, some of the asanas are Mayuraasana, Hala-asana, Padmaasana & Sheershaasana.
Stability through Yoga
Yoga brings our body, mind, and soul in tune. It teaches us to be peaceful in chaotic situations. It connects us to the soul and helps us in growing more, spiritually.
When Yoga Practitioners are asked about the changes in their lives, they talk about their changed perspectives towards life. Even they found a change in the way they speak; hasty speakers start observing a more unruffled way of speech. Their actions become more poised.
The learning they gain through this broadens their vision. A person who sees a ‘no’ in his life starts seeing ‘ why not’; is the easiest way this could be described in.
Yoga manages Stress
The lifestyle with which people are dealing today, calls for Stress management. The mental exhaustion, failing in expectations, burdensome work, multiple responsibilities and lack of self-care; everything has resulted in a stressful life. Increase in depression issues worldwide is an eye-opener for the lifestyle we are following.
In my E-book, ‘Achieving Milestones‘, I explained about Pace in Life, which is of utmost need these days.
Yoga helps in dealing with issues like anger and anxiety. A person practicing Yoga has the capacity of dealing with stress in a better way. Bhramari is one of such pranayams releases stress.
Yoga has helped people to overcome depression and make them a better person. There is certainly no way to make our sufferings and problems disappear. But there are ways which help you to lead the life in a calm and peaceful manner so that we learn to deal with the sufferings in a better way.
Detoxification is a process of getting rid of toxins from our body. It cleanses our body and allows it to function properly. Toxins are harmful materials which can damage our body mechanism, thus it’s necessary to get rid of them.
Our body has its own detoxification system. But when its cleansing process isn’t enough, we need to find ways to support the system. Yoga is one of those ways. There are certain exercises where we need to bend our body parts to let them free from blockages and impurities.
Yoga poses involve bending and twisting which results in proper blood circulation to different organs. Different asanas allow clean blood to reach different parts of the bodies. It also facilitates digestion. This way it helps in detoxing the body.
Some of the asanas which detox our body are Ardhamatsyendraasana, Marichyaasana & Garudaasana.
The only thing which attracted me out of multiple benefits of yoga was flexibility. But later I started enjoying other aspects of Yoga too.
Certainly, flexibility needs a lot of practice and consistency. You can’t expect yourself to do a Chakraasana in a day.
For those who are passionate about dancing and wish for agility, Yoga is of great help. Chakrasana, Dhanuraasana, Ustarasna, Bhujangasana, etc are some of the asanas which assist in flexibility. But we should be careful while doing these. No one should perform any of the asanas without fully knowing their body.
Relief from diseases/ailments
Nowadays doctors are recommending various Yogasanas to their patients as a cure to their diseases, apart from prescribed medicines. One asana has multiple benefits and is helpful in curing multiple diseases. For instance, if we take Bujhangasana; it provides relief in back pain, thyroid problems, asthma, even slip disc and is also a body detoxification exercise.
Yoga not only cures diseases but prevents us from various health issues. Without proper care, our body soon starts exhausting. I’ve faced weakness and other health issues which later on caused me troubles in the form of stress and fatigue.
Yoga has been a major cause that I’m able to work now. It has improved my health a lot but there still remains a long way to go. I’ve now made it a regular habit and have witnessed tremendous changes.
Treating the Root Cause
Yoga and Ayurveda are prominently known for their root cause treatment. Certainly, modern medical science has achieved great heights but the knowledge we treasure in the form of Yoga is priceless.
For instance; Sarvangasana is considered to be the best cure for thyroid. It helps in stimulating glands and also maintaining proper hormonal balance. In this pose, we lift our body upwards till neck. The pressure is created near the thyroid gland, thus curing the imbalances from roots.
Yoga works slowly but effectively. If you are thinking of losing weight through Yoga, it may not give an instant result but will be helpful in terms of long term benefits. This is because it works at the root level.
Improved Quality of Life
With all these benefits of Yoga, the quality of life improves automatically. It has been observed that those who bring Yoga in their routine start living life with a changed perspective. They experience mindfulness and learn to deal with all the circumstances peacefully and more wisely.
Once we start learning and growing, we’ll notice that everything in life starts settling down. Or I should say, we become better at the arrangements. These arrangements become more qualitative, by time.
Hence, we can only understand this by looking back and realizing, how much our life has improved in terms of quality.
These were some awesome benefits of Yoga. As soon as you start building up a habit for Yoga, you start witnessing the changes inside you. Surely there was something which made me love Yoga. The changes I witnessed in my life were the ones which opened the doors to my inner self.
Do you love Yoga too? What changes have you experienced in your life because of Yoga? If you are just planning since ages, when is the plan going to turn into action? I would love to hear from you all in the comment box below.
PS: You can read the second part of this blog post here. Stay connected. Stay healthy.