Wednesday, January 12, 2011

What does it NOT do?

I used to get together once a week with some ladies to play a pick-up game of basketball. None of us were all stars, but it was fun and a good way to get some exercise. One of the ladies that played with us would often come from yoga. Let's just say she was crazy toned and so strong! Once while we were sitting out I was asking her about her class and she started showing me some moves. I was so impressed! It made me wish I did more yoga...yet I still didn't make an effort to. But not any more! Right?! Right.

The Mayo Clinic defines yoga as a mind-body type of alternative medicine practice that combines physical and mental exercises that result in a sense of peacefulness, relaxation and calmness. Practicing yoga regularly improves both mental and physical well-being. Seriously, what does it NOT do, then?

Yoga has been seen to help with so many things. Here are the ones I want to highlight:

1. Flexibility
Practicing yoga on a regular basis is known to increase flexibility (definitely something I need help on!)
Tight muscles have a negative influence on the alignment of bones and joints. One example is that tight hamstrings create lower-back pain by pulling on the spine. Also, tight hip flexors may cause improper alignment of the thigh bone, which then causes pain in the knee. Increased flexibility also results in better posture. See all the benefits?

2. Stress Management
Since yoga uses quiet, controlled movements, by nature it allows you to focus on things other than the every day stresses and focus on how your body is moving. Stress creates tense muscles, increased heart rate, abnormal breathing and high blood pressure.

3. Fitness
For some reason some people thing yoga isn't much of a workout. Sometimes I want to ask them if they have ever tried it, because it can make you sore if you try hard enough! The poses you do challenge everything from strength, to flexibility, balance and motion. The Defense Institute of Physiology performed a study in which the participants who practiced yoga daily did not fatigue after physical exertion as easily as those who performed basic exercises daily. The study also revealed that yoga increases aerobic capacity and stamina.

~What are the benefits you have found from yoga?


  1. Trisha--When I was living at home in summer 2008 I went to a "hot yoga" class. I think it is called Birkam or something like that. You basically do yoga in a 100 degree room. This is the only exercise I have ever really, truly enjoyed. I was in thee best shape of my life and LOVED going to my classes every day. If they had it here I would totally go....I miss it!
    My teacher even wore purple eye shadow so I felt right at home! haaha ;)

  2. OK...I've heard about that! I think it sounds pretty sweet! I'm a little intimidated by it though...

    P.S. I totally laughed out loud in the LIBRARY when I read about the purple eye shadow. Love it!

  3. If I can handle it, anyone can...especially YOU! I was in terrible shape when I started so you'd be much better off than I was! You should totally try it.

    Glad it made you laugh, I wasn't sure it would let me sign in with my blog so I had to say something to let you know who I was ;)


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