What is yoga and how does it benefit?
Ancient yoga scholars said that yoga combines poses with breathing and concentration to create strength, awareness and harmony between mind and body. Yoga provides many obvious physical benefits to our health – flexibility, endurance, circulatory health – and now more than ever, we are also aware of the important role yoga plays in our mental health.
Self-care is a hot topic as, fortunately, as life around us continues to gain momentum, we need to slow down and look inward to our own mental health.
What Are the Benefits of Yoga for Our Mental Health?
- Relieve anxiety
- Reducing depression
- Promoting better sleep
- Fight fatigue
- Reduce stress
- Improving the focus
- Increase tolerance
Anxiety, stress, and depression are often linked. They manifest in many different ways, causing everyone’s experience of mental illness to be unique, sometimes including:
- Physical illness
- Difficulty breathing
- Emotional outbursts
- Low mood
- Bad sleep
- Physical aches and pains
- Coping strategies such as addictions
Do Yoga And Meditation Promote Relaxation?
Yoga and meditation promote relaxation, the opposite of anxiety, stress and depression. They enhance our ability to stay centered, which is vital for stress management. By pausing to breathe, meditate, or stretch, the mind is diverted away from the trigger and a biological reaction of calming begins.
Specific practices of yoga and meditation stimulate your vagus nerve, which is located in our parasympathetic nervous system – our resting and digestive response.
These simple practices increase awareness of what is going on in our bodies, making it possible to detect changes and early signs of mental health problems. How? One way is to teach us to be present rather than worrying about what happened in the past or what might happen in the future.
And … Exercise naturally increases the flow of the ‘happy hormone’ serotonin. Thus, moving and relaxing our body calms the mind and increasing our mental health positively affects our physical health. When the world feels unbalanced, unequal or low, yoga can help us maintain our inner balance and elevate our daily life experience. And we can use it anywhere anytime.