If you haven’t tried yoga, you’d be surprised by the multidimensional benefits you’ll see, physically, mentally, emotionally, energetically and spiritually. Yoga means – to bring together – to connect mind, body, spirit.
Physically yoga helps with balance, strength, flexibility. Yoga works at a cellular level, helping organs, bones, muscles, tendons, tissues, blood and other fluids stay healthy.
Mentally yoga helps rid our brains of negative self-talk and builds positive mental patterns as well as focus, patience, endurance, discipline, and mental flexibility or open-mindedness.
Emotionally yoga helps burn negative emotions from the body and builds self-acceptance, compassion, and overall understanding of one’s self and those around us.
Energetically yoga balances energy and opens and connects all energy within the body. It helps people with low energy and high energy and/or “stuck” energy.
Spiritually yoga helps practitioners let go of egoic or self-defeating thinking/feeling in order to stay on a purpose-driven path.
While we practice physical yoga, or asana, on our mats, this is one small part of yoga. Yoga is a disciplined and peaceful way to live life. Yoga is not a religion, but it can help people who practice a particular religion stay more attentive to their beliefs.
At first, many people assume, “I can’t do yoga; I’m not flexible.” All the more reason to do yoga! It is rare for me to see someone come to class who is flexible – we become flexible by slowly opening our bodies up and slowly repairing old injuries. I cannot stress “slowly” enough. In yoga, there is no end goal – it’s about starting wherever you are, respecting the body that you have, and not really worrying about what other practitioners can do. It is about listening to your body, and letting go of any preconceived notions. If you are in any level of pain during a physical yoga practice, you are moving very far away from what yoga is all about – healing and connecting body, mind, and spirit over time.
Over time, practitioners see dramatic progress. People who have had bad backs, shoulders, knees, and even high blood pressure, depression, or sleep problems have repaired their bodies and healed their bodies from head to toe, inside and out. I’ve been able to eliminate thyroid medication because of yoga. I’ve also cleared out a lot of past mental and emotional baggage. Physically, I’ve rid myself of old aches and pains from being a former distance runner. Rather than having my brain or emotions control me, I control them (most of the time!). I live life more fully engaged and in greater ease and peace because of yoga.
Try a yoga class in your community! There’s all kinds of classes for all abilities and ages!