Yoga has been around for thousands of years, but many of us still do not take full advantage of this wonderful practice. Yoga has so many benefits to offer, not only physically but mentally as well. Incorporating yoga into your daily practice can have drastic effects on your mind, body, and soul.
The Physical Benefits of Yoga
Many of our daily aches and pains can be decreased or even resolved with regular Yoga practice. Yoga does amazing things for increasing flexibility and allowing for deep muscle release. As you increase your body’s flexibility, you also decrease strain on many of your muscles and joints. This works as a protective mechanism in preventing injuries. As you continue with regular yoga practice, you will also notice improvement in your posture and balance.
Studies have shown that long term yoga practice can also work to improve both blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Yoga helps to decrease cortisol levels in the body. This is beneficial to you, as high cortisol levels can lead to weight gain, elevated blood sugar, and decreased immune function. As you move through different yoga poses it helps to increase blood circulation in the body and to rev up your heart rate. Yoga can be an extremely beneficial work out for your body.
On YouTube I found some of the most amazing free yoga classes made by Juliana & Mark of Boho Beautiful. I love that I can do these in the comfort of my own home. These classes are great if you are a beginner and are just starting to dip your toes into the world of yoga. You can do these classes almost anywhere and you can feel free to move at your own pace. These videos utilize all different types of yoga practices and provide amazing yoga sessions that can be done in the setting of your choice. These videos are great for newbies and advanced yogis alike. Here are some of my favorites…
All of the videos are shot in insanely beautiful locations. Juliana and Mark, creators of Boho Beautiful, do an amazing job providing high quality videos that provide uplifting and relaxing yoga sessions. The best part is, it doesn’t just stop at yoga. There are Boho Beautiful videos for fitness, travel, food, lifestyle inspiration, and meditation. I have watched almost all of these videos myself and I am obsessed. Juliana and Mark are so inspiring and I love all of the work that they do. I highly recommend checking out their YouTube channel if you have not already!
Mental Health Benefits of Yoga
Deep, controlled breathing plays a major role in yoga. Yoga teaches you to control your breathing and to stay present in the moment. This helps in other aspects of life as well. As you learn to control your breathing, you also learn to breathe and stay present in moments of chaos. This allows you to become much more resilient in times of stress and anxiety.
Yoga also tends to take you through a series of “power poses”. If you haven’t watched Amy Cuddy’s Ted Talk on Body Language & Power Posing, you should definitely check it out. This gives you an idea of why you feel so good, and dare I say powerful, after holding these poses. In short, body language plays a huge role in presence and the feelings of either power or powerlessness. Many of the expansive and body opening poses of yoga leave you feeling confident, present and ready to take on the day. Yoga truly is such a great way to clear the mind, and begin/end the day right.
Have you tried yoga yet? What is your favorite type of yoga practice?