photos by Ugne Henriko
While in most of the events I go, someone offers you a glass of prosecco as soon as you open the door, this time it was completely different. It started at 11AM and that’s a big difference already.
I am not a dedicated yogi, far from being one, yet a regular stretch and an occasional full yoga session have become essential in my everyday life a while ago. I will not try to convince you, however, I believe it should be essential for everyone, both for the physical and mental health. I told you and I’m telling you again,I will not try to convince you, at least not too hard, however, I will give you few reasons, why you should at least consider giving yoga a try. Right here right now. Yoga benefits that you might want to know about. Or to remember, if you already know all of that.
Yoga regulates the body
It’s proved by various scientific studies, that benefits of yoga include improved sleep, better diet patterns and improved physical function. Certain poses can help stimulate various physiological actions in the body. For example, vertebra twists can help promote GIT (gastrointestinal) motility, which is beneficial for regulating bowel movements. Poses such as bridge and wheel are also beneficial when practised in the morning as they release energy from the heart, which is favourable for the day ahead.
Since so many of us nowadays suffer from hormone imbalance (I’m no exception), this one certainly deserves a separate paragraph. Whether this is just a short-term issue or something you’ve been living with for a long time, it can be horrible. You can face awful mood swings, unexplained and sudden weight gain, acne, migraines and more. Yoga is a brilliant way to balance things out again. It does this by stimulating different parts of your body and regulating hormone production.
Improves athletic performance
As you tend to hold poses for a while in yoga (depending on the style of class), it helps to build strength in the body. Not only that, it’s also great for balance, flexibility, mobility and mental endurance – all of which are essential if you were to participate in an endurance event.
There are lots of professional athletes that consider yoga to be a very important part of their training schedule. I’ve done yoga classes with bulky guys in the same class myself. Exactly, those that you wouldn’t think care even a bit about breathing. So, if it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for you.
Improves range of movement and mobility
If you are desk-bound daily, you probably suffer from poor mobility and range of movement because muscles and connective tissues become tight and restrictive due to sitting all day. I personally get extremely tight shoulders if I stop taking care of myself. At one point I had to take a month of daily shoulder massages to soften those shoulders out a bit. So be smart and learn from my mistakes.
Gym is an option and not a bad one. However, while strength training is important for everyone, if you don’t balance it out, you do risk struggling with the above. Yoga, however, can improve your flexibility and reduce this risk to a great extent.
Helps to get some quiet time
It’s rare that we give ourselves the time to still our mind, especially when we are said to have at least 50,000 thoughts a day. Yoga encourages a different kind of thought process whereby we are challenged to hone our attention towards one movement at a time. You’ll notice the moment you’re not dedicating your mind to a pose because it’s likely you’ll lose your balance.
All of that sounds pretty damn good, right? I’m not saying you can’t survive in this world without yoga, yet it does help a lot, so why shouldn’t you try it?
Pat pat yourself.