3 Reasons to Start Yoga

by Calyn Ehid

A lot of people swear by yoga. However, they aren’t the only ones, and the reasons why are clear. These ancient poses offer myriad benefits to the regular practitioner. If you’ve been thinking about taking up this gentle practice, here are three reasons why you should.

1. Stress Relief

According to an article on the University of Rochester website, yoga counts as a simple, yet effective way to reduce your daily stress levels. It works for this purpose because the discipline of this practice encourages you to focus your mind on the movements and the present moment. By doing it regularly, the practitioner learns how the mind and the body are connected, which also helps you keep tabs on any stresses or stress-inducing thoughts that might come up

2. Building Muscles

An article in Men’s Fitness recommends doing yoga for its muscle-building benefits. As the fitness site explained, doing the gentle positions allows you to build your muscles using your own body weight. To be sure pumping iron can and does build muscle. However, it isn’t always possible to hit the gym. If you’re on the road or if you really just want to stay at home, but still want to work out, why not try it?

Yoga positions like the plank, the side plank, and the chair can be real muscle builders. You can take this practice anywhere you go – no gym membership required. Even better, unlike lifting weights, which can also tighten the muscles to the point of stiffness, these exercises actually make you more flexible. This practice also has the added benefit of helping you improve your posture by strengthening your core. Finally, you’ll have better stability and stamina if you add this workout to your routine.

3. Other Benefits

Women’s Health Magazine points out that stress wreaks havoc on the body in myriad ways. It causes you to gain weight, lose their hair, and even makes you break out. Fortunately, this practice has been shown to reduce the effects of stress dramatically. It also helps you sleep better, which, in turn, helps you alleviate some of the effects of stress.

But that’s only one example. Your immune system gets stronger because the hormones that can wreak havoc with the stress hormones are kept in check by doing these exercises regularly. They have also been shown to reduce cold symptoms: The gentle positions will alleviate congestion and encourage your body to heal.

Doing yoga has so many benefits, it’s difficult to count them all. Aside from giving you a flexible, yet very effective workout at home or on the road, it has been shown to decrease stress and reduce inflammation. Learning a few key positions can make you happier, healthier, and better grounded. Truly, this practice offers so many pros and no cons. It might just be the perfect exercise for you.