Updated: Feb 25, 2022
Yoga is considered one of the oldest forms of exercise. There are many types of yoga, from ashtanga yoga and kundalini yoga, to iyengar yoga and yin yoga. Yoga is much more than physical poses, it is a holistic practice that encompasses a wide range of self-reflective, contemplative, and yogic practices. Regular physical activity is one of the key elements in the ecosystem of factors that keep us mentally and emotionally balanced. But, what are the mental benefits of yoga?
1. Yoga reliefs from depression
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is one of the most common mental health disorders in the world. Yoga is a physical, deep-focus exercise that teaches mindfulness and breathing techniques. By engaging in yoga, people with depression often find more ease and comfort in their lives. In this sense, yoga can be considered an effective alternative treatment for MDD.
Yoga is a helpful form of exercise as it focuses on deep, controlled breathing as well as flexibility and balance. It helps modulate the stress response, reducing heart rate, lowering high blood pressure and easing respiration. This may also help in managing pain tolerance.
2. Yoga lowers anxiety levels
Countless studies have shown that yoga is a great way to reduce symptoms of anxiety. One type of yoga that has been effective is Yoga Nidra, which is a body scan/guided meditation. It has been shown to conclusively reduce symptoms of anxiety.
Yoga is a combination of exercise, meditation, relaxation techniques and it’s a wonderful way to relieve anxiety. It is therapeutic for heart diseases, in the sense that yoga practice is the best way to keep the heart healthy. It has the ability to reduce your heart rate, respiration rate, and blood pressure.
Yoga is one of the best practices to regulate your stress response system, clear your mind, and calm down your nervous system. This improves your ability to live in the present moment. Each yoga class provides you with a calming experience and regular practice of yoga helps to improve the quality and quantity of your sleep. Moreover, Harvard medical school suggests that yoga and meditation helps coping with coronavirus anxiety as well.
3. Yoga boosts concentration, focus and memory
Yoga is so much more than just a means of improving flexibility.Studies show that it can boost concentration, memory, and focus. Yoga is a practice of focusing inward, listening to your body, and finding balance. It can be used as an opportunity to find your focal point for your practice.
Yoga can improve cognitive functioning, helping you feel more present. Mental health issues tend to exist in the mind, and they can have a significant impact on people’s lives. Yoga can help you to stay positive and focus on the present rather than the past or future.
4. Yoga improves your mood
Yoga is a natural way to produce serotonin, a chemical that contributes to feelings of happiness and wellbeing. This chemical—sometimes called the happy chemical because it contributes to feelings of wellbeing and happiness—contributes to people's ability to regulate their anxiety and stress levels.
Yoga promotes self-kindness, non-comparison, and supports a more compassionate inner voice. It's also the key to psychological and emotional healing, plus it promotes self-esteem and body awareness.
5. Yoga improves your brain's functioning
Yoga has many psychological benefits that can help you stay healthy at any age. It helps older adults by keeping their brain functioning strong, keeping them feeling young.
Yoga also helps your brain stay well-oxygenated and calm. If you want to stay vibrant and live a long life, then using yoga as a tool is a great idea. So if you want to keep your brain young, well oxygenated and calm, yoga is certainly a tool you should use to stay vital in your body and mind.
The bottom line Yoga is a type of physical exercise that centers on different poses, breathing techniques, and meditation. Yoga has numerous health benefits; Apart from building strength and improving balance, yoga poses enhance one’s physical and mental health and they are not only beneficial for weight loss and core strength but yoga is also therapeutic for depression and anxiety. Bolster your mental resilience and face life's challenges with a regular yoga practice. By doing so, one can reduce anxiety, feel self-aware and less stressed. The more we practice yoga and breath-work, the more resilience we build and the better we'll be to handle the hard times in our lives. We can also invest in our wellbeing to prepare for what's ahead.
Yoga is a powerful healing practice that can help to support your health holistically. Yoga can give you the tools to feel more connected to yourself, to soothe and strengthen your nervous system and to treat yourself with more compassion.
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