“Yoga takes you into the present moment, the only place where life exists.”

Alphy Johnson

8/14/20232 min read

“Yoga takes you into the present moment, the only place where life exists”

Yoga is a Sanskrit term that means ‘to join, unite or yoke together’ and the essential purpose of yoga is to bring together body, mind and spirit into a harmonious whole. Yoga originated in the East, mainly in ancient India, and gained massive popularity in the modern Western world. It has become a part of the chosen lifestyle of thousands of Westerners who seek balance in body, mind, and spirit. Yoga is a type of mental and physical practice that helps to improve fitness and have better concentration for work or decision-making. Ayurvedic medicine is also a part of the yogic path to health and balance.

Yoga can be a valuable tool for improving mental health and well-being. It combines physical postures, breathing exercises, meditation, and relaxation techniques to promote relaxation, reduce stress and enhance overall mental and emotional balance.

Mental Benefits of Yoga:

· Stress reduction: yoga helps and boosts mindful awareness and relaxation which can help to lower the stress hormone cortisol in the body.

· Mindfulness: yoga practices focus on being present in the moment. This helps people to control their uncontrolled thoughts and reduce bring peace of mind to the body.

· Anxiety relief: By following deep breathing techniques body’s anxiety levels can be brought down ensuring calmness and stability.

· Improved sleep: practicing yoga can improve sleep quality. Yoga techniques ensure calmness to a person’s mind and body helping him sleep better.

· Accepting oneself: yoga is a great tool for bringing understanding in the person for self-help and compassion. It leads to a healthy relationship between thoughts and emotions.

· Sense of belongingness: practicing yoga in a group can provide a sense of belongingness and social support which is very much important for mental wellness.

· Positivity: Deep breathing exercises and other ‘asanas’ help in easing out the tension in the body. It relieves the muscles bringing relaxation and boosting confidence and helps in detachment from the materialistic world.

Physical benefits of yoga

· Better posture

· Improved sleep

· Balanced body and mind

· Strong immunity

· Free of blood pressure problems

· Controlled pulse and respiratory rate

· Better functioning of the heart

· Free of cholesterol ailments

· Cleansing of the body

· Increased energy level and happiness.

Tips for a healthy yoga

1. Fix an early time: it is always better to start the practice either in the morning or evening. It refreshes the mind and relaxes the body.

2. Comfortable space: to begin with it is better to have yoga in a class with an instructor or a private corner at home so as to minimize distractions.

3. Start on a light stomach: yoga postures would be better practiced on a light or empty stomach so that you can enjoy flexibility for different poses.

4. Consistency: to get the desired results practices should be regular and consistent.

5. Gentleness: yoga is done to relax and bring about calm and peace of mind. Therefore, it is always better to have comfortable clothing and short breaks to ease the body.

6. Mood setting: the aim of yoga is to ensure calmness so soft music can be played for a good take-off.

7. Different yoga poses may be practiced for a better and a healthy lifestyle and other benefits.

“We all wish for world peace, but world peace will never be achieved unless we first establish peace within our own minds” – Geshe Kelsang Gyatso