“There exists an indisputable connection between a person's overall physical and mental health and the inner peace and well-being yoga is designed to achieve. Yoga suspends the fluctuations of the mind and by acting consciously, we live better and suffer less.”- Catherine Woodyard
With it being National yoga day this week I am excited to share with you how Yoga can be beneficial for your mind and your body. Yoga, an ancient practice and meditation, has helped me personally with my overall health and wellbeing and I think anything that brings us joy is worth sharing. Of course it’s not for everyone, you might love running or hiking instead or have your own wellbeing strategy but for those of you who are Yoga lovers or are interested in perhaps delving into this practice you might be surprised by some of the benefits it can bring.
There have been numerous scientific studies highlighting Yoga’s value in healthcare. It has been proven to benefit those suffering a multitude of ailments including; arthritis, women's health, chronic pain, oncology and other specialities. It’s no wonder pro athletes including professional football players are using this method to enhance their performance and strengthen their minds and bodies.
1. Yoga benefits for the body
The slow movements and deep breathing at the core of yoga practice increases blood flow and warms up your muscles, whilst holding yoga poses builds body strength. Yoga soothes tension and can boost your energy and endurance levels. Yogic practices are most obviously known for increased flexibility, it gradually loosens the muscles and connective tissues around the joints easing aches and pains. It also helps to build muscle mass and strength. Try the Yoga stretch kit, our indulgent post yoga trio to soothe and recuperate tired muscles.
2. How yoga benefits mental health
I could physically see the changes in my body from starting Yoga but was dubious about Yoga actually having an impact on my overall health including my mental health. After what has now been years of practicing I now know how therapeutic yoga can be, not only has it enhanced my wellbeing but has also given me a much better quality of life. My sleep patterns have improved, I feel more satisfied and at peace with myself and others and it's given me a sense of balance and union between my mind and body. This is what inspired me to create the yoga essentials kit.
3. Yoga promotes self care
I started doing yoga as I was starting to feel burnt out, a friend of mine suggested yoga and I haven’t looked back. I make sure to set time aside for it at least once a week. It's my time away from the chaos and distractions of life where all I have to focus on is my breath and the next pose I'm doing. It helps me to manage stress in a healthy way. I’ve also found it helps with weight control, mindful eating and body image bringing a heightened self awareness that transcends into all aspects of my life.
4. Benefits of meditation
Yoga develops inner awareness, by harnessing the power of meditation and breath work and the mind-body connection. You are present in that moment, focused on your body's abilities. I love to take three deep breaths and light a candle when practicing. I designed the Yoga travel candle with the hectic pace of life in mind. This way you can bring a sense of calm to any environment when you’re on the go with minimal effort. Try this quick meditation if you're limited on time.
5. How can Yoga help stress
One of the main goals of yoga is to achieve tranquility of the mind. Consistent yoga can actually lead to significant increases in serotonin levels. Now seen as a mind and body medicine, Yoga is recognised for its therapeutic effects in stress management. Research has shown that people who practice yoga have reduced levels of cortisol. A high stress lifestyle can cause all manner of illnesses which is why we should be making stress management a priority in the search for a healthier way of living.
First, diffuse essential oil in the air. I love to use our energising boost essential oil remedy which helps to stimulate the mind and reawaken your senses. Try this simple pose to alleviate migraines, improve digestion, and help relieve symptoms of stress and anxiety.
Whilst modern medicine has its place in healing physical and psychological diseases, it has been argued that a purely medical approach is less effective in healing the intellectual and emotional side of the human mind. Yoga can offer a timeless and holistic model of health and healing and whilst it may not eliminate some physical or adverse conditions of the body it offers a holistic path of healing and wellbeing.
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