Pretty Tough Guide to Yoga

Yoga is an activity that includes mental and physical exercises which develop breathing and preserve health. The word Yoga comes from Sanskrit “yuj” meaning unity, to join, to yoke. Ultimately the purpose of yoga is to connect you with your true self in the present moment, uniting body and spirit through the breath in preparation for meditation.

The practice of yoga  promotes greater awareness, flexibility, discipline, and ease of movement. Whether done to improve posture or prevent physical ailments, yoga poses, or asanas, are a great way to align body, mind, and spirit.

If you’re curious about yoga, try visiting a yoga studio to discover what a deep connection people have to the ancient tradition. Yoga studios are great because you’ll get an instant sense of community and discipline. While its roots may go back thousands of years, the yoga most people practice today is definitely modern.

Yoga is based on its three essential components:

  • Exercise – a soft workout that increase flexibility, power, equilibrium.
  • Breathing – enlarges blood circulation and lung potential.
  • Meditation – brings emotional and physical relaxation.

Exercises and breathing procedures set up the body and mind for meditation. Regular practice of all these procedures has as results a strong and health body, a lucid and brilliant mind.

Classes can be taken two or three times in a week. A session usually lasts 45 minutes – 90 minutes. It begins with warm-up exercises and breathing training. Then people will try a sequence of yoga postures, each of them being practiced from one to three times. After four or five different postures you usually have permission to rest, then the procedures are followed by a period of physical relaxation joint with meditation.

Yoga has a lot of benefits which include:

  • Improved mental lucidity;
  • Reduced stress and anxiety;
  • Increased flexibility, range of motion;
  • Reduced heart rate;
  • Improved muscle relaxation;
  • Increased physical endurance;
  • Self-confidence;
  • Decreased respiratory rate.
  • Yoga is also used for many health problems such as:

  • Depression;
  • Headaches;
  • Insomnia;
  • Heart disease;
  • Chronic pains;
  • Thyroid illness, and several more.
  • What’s so cool about yoga is that the deeper you get into it, the more you can explore the more spiritual and mystical traditions–tracing all the way back to the stories of Krishna and Shiva in the Bhagavad Gita. For starters, focus on the physical practice and as you become stronger and more flexible, you’ll begin to enjoy the emotional and spiritual benefits as well.

    Q & A

    Q: Is yoga good for lower back pain?
    A: Research shows that yoga can be used to manage lower back pain. Yoga stretches out the spine and strengthens the muscles of your back, hips and legs. Doing two of the most basic yoga postures – the Downward-Facing and Upward-Facing Dog – every day can make a big difference in your back’s flexibility. Be sure to start out slowly and gently and seek out classes or yoga teachers tuned into your special needs.

    Namaste. (The light in me bows down to the light in you.)

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