There’s no doubt that yoga works wonders for both your mind and body – whether it’s a morning sun salutation to energise you for the day ahead, or an evening vinyasa flow to unwind after a hard day’s work.
I’ve been an yogi for about 3 years now and it’s changed my life. Not only am I fitter, I’m less stressed and I’ve learnt to be more mindful.
Here are my top 8 reasons why yoga is awesome:
1) It makes you bendy
All the stretching involved helps you loosen up your muscles and joints, and this becomes even more important as you get older. I’ve never been the most flexible of folk, but since I’ve started yoga I can do all sorts of cool stuff, like this ‘full wheel’ pose:
2) It gives you strength
Who needs to spend hours weightlifting in the gym when you can use your own body weight to make you strong? It’s so empowering knowing that every session I’m building up stamina and toning muscle so I can do more complex poses like ‘crow’:
3) It perfects your posture
If you’re a desk slave like me, you probably spend a lot of time hunched up. In yoga, a lot of poses require you to elongate your spine and bring your shoulders down. And when you apply this to your day-to-day life, you’ll be less likely to get back aches and pains.
4) You can do it anywhere
The best thing about yoga is you don’t need any fancy equipment. Just a yoga mat. And yourself. Sometimes you don’t even need a mat:
5) It improves your balance
Lots of yoga poses involve balancing. Practicing this can give you better awareness of your body as you’ll learn how to position your muscles and sense where your body needs to be. This will reduce the risk of falling on your face. And it’s not just the physical side – yoga helps you balance your mind too. It’s all about thinking positively.
6) It’s fun!
If you’re going to do something repeatedly, you’ve got to enjoy it. I find it so satisfying when I’m flowing into each pose, like a graceful yoga ballerina. And it’s even more rewarding when I can master more challenging poses. Each class is a step closer to that.
7) You can relax easier
In my evening yoga classes, I often wish I can be transported from the mat to my bed. It’s just so damn calming! A big part of yoga is learning to control your breathing – slowing it down and inhaling and exhaling deeply – which can be very meditative.
8) It makes you happy
“I feel crap” said no one ever after a yoga class. I always leave the session feeling amazing. That’s because yoga releases the hormone oxytocin, which floods your body with feelings of happiness and wellbeing. Neat huh?
Yoga panther x