The word yoga means ‘union’ in Sanskrit, the language of ancient India where yoga originated. In Yoga this is thought to refer to the union between the mind, body and spirit.
The specific health benefits you can expect to enjoy from doing yoga regularly can include:
- Stretching your body in new ways will help it to increase flexibility so helping to achieve a greater range of motion to muscles and joints;
- Many yoga poses require you to support the weight of your own body including balancing on one leg, Some exercises require us to move slowly in and out of poses, which also increase strength. As a by-product of getting stronger, we can expect to see increased muscle tone;
- Increased flexibility and strength can also help with the prevention of some types of back pain. Yoga also improves alignment both in and out of class, which helps prevent many other types of pain;
- Yoga breathing exercises teach us how to breathe better, which benefits the whole body;
- Physical activity is good for relieving stress, and this is particularly true of yoga. You will almost certainly find that you leave a yoga class feeling less stressed than when you started.
Doing yoga will give us an increased awareness of your own body. This can lead to improved posture and greater self-confidence.