Part of what has made yoga so popular is the idea of ”yoga body” – a body type that is supposedly long and thin. And many of us believe that practicing yoga regularly will help us achieve that.
The reality is that this may or may not be true. Yoga is practiced effectively by people of all body types and is much more than sculpt your physique. While yoga may help some of us to get rid of the pounds, the benefits of mind-body practice go beyond weight loss.
We’ve all seen pictures from magazines and YouTube videos of fait Yoginis yogis and twist their bodies into a knot. The good news is that it is not necessary to reach that level of ability to benefit from yoga. Practicing yoga on a regular basis, regardless of their level of experience, it can help increase muscle flexibility. A study by Colorado State University Bikram yoga linked with greater flexibility in the shoulders, lower back and hamstrings.
When many of us think of strength training, which immediately comes to mind is weight lifting. But yoga can build strength, too. Anyone who has tried to maintain a yoga pose difficult know it can be quite difficult. Maintaining a practice on a regular basis, and holding periods poses for increasingly longer time, can be an excellent form of strength training.
3. Better brain function
According to a study by the University of Illinois, only 20 minutes of hatha yoga improves cognitive functions such as memory and concentration. In the study, participants performed significantly better on tests of cognitive function after 20 minutes of yoga that have done after 20 minutes of aerobic exercise.
4. Increased lung capacity
A Ball State University study related to hatha yoga increased vital capacity of the lungs. Participants practiced yoga postures and breathing techniques and relaxation, for 15 weeks. At the end of that time period, they demonstrated significantly greater vital capacity of the lungs. The study also suggests that these practices could be especially useful for smokers and people with asthma.
5. Reducing stress
According to the Mayo Clinic, studies have suggested that yoga can reduce both stress and anxiety. You can also play a role in boosting your mood and improve your overall sense of well being.
6. chronic diseases
Yoga can help those struggling with chronic diseases to manage conditions more effectively. For example, you can help reduce risk factors for heart disease and blood pressure. You can also reduce or alleviate the symptoms of illnesses such as depression and insomnia, according to the Mayo Clinic.
7. Stable blood sugar
A study published in Diabetes Care found that when people with type 2 diabetes gentle yoga practice his blood sugar tends to be more stable. This may be the case, since yoga can lead to small amounts of weight loss.
8. The reduction of oxidative stress
The same study found that participants who practiced yoga regularly enjoyed a decrease in oxidative stress, a situation in which the levels of free radicals exceeds the body’s ability to neutralize them. This can lead to a number of chronic diseases.
Clearly practice yoga regularly can lead to a wide range of health benefits beyond weight loss. At the same time, it is important to take into account the needs and abilities of your unique body. When starting a new exercise routine physical activity, be aware not to push to the point of exhaustion or injury, and talk to a medical physicist or professional trainer if you are not sure whether the type of exercise in question is right for you.
– Sarah Cooke