Yoga is becoming more and more popular today. Whether it’s a lifestyle change, a social thing or a way of life, yoga has an endless list of benefits for everyone. Sure, one or two tries won’t necessarily keep you away from illness or make you significantly stronger but with regular practice, you’ll be surprised how yoga affects your life. Here’s how it helps you everyday:
1 – You get a fresh start.
What better way to start your day than to wake up happy! Studies show that regular yoga alters the brain chemistry and boosts your mood. In fact, Science Daily revealed that one yoga session can increase Gamma Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) levels in the brain thereby lowering anxiety and depression. Plus, yoga is also an exercise that incorporates elements of focusing on breathing and relaxation. With these in our daily lives, we are sure to be happier, healthier, more positive and more capable to handle obstacles and stressful situations. So, if you are looking to constantly waking up at the right side of the bed feeling fresh and invigorated, yoga can definitely be your perfect solution.
2 – You can easily and freely move.
Yoga is known to be a good way to help you become more flexible and mobile. This helps you become less prone to any possible injury and it also helps you combat against physical stress. Additionally, daily tasks like reaching for that unopened cereal box on top of the cupboard, tying your shoelaces and lifting objects are becomes extremely easier and more effortless.
These tasks my seem ordinary to you and you might think, “Hey, I don’t have any problem doing that!” But then again, do you know that yoga keeps the muscles loose and limber? As we age, our muscles become tighter and shorter, and we naturally become more likely to be physically stressed or tired. With yoga, you will be able to move through a larger range of motion, you will have enhanced blood circulation, you will have better muscle relaxation, and slowly but surely, you will start to recognize significant improvement in your posture.
3 – You’ll get a certain glow.
Skin maintenance can be a very rigorous job. To those who use a lot of products, it can be expensive, too. Did you know that yoga can give you a glow like no commercial cream or serum can? With zero expenses, you get to enjoy enhanced blood circulation which is very helpful in skin cell renewal, in keeping the skin well-nourished and supple and in promoting a rosy glow. You also get to sweat out all those nasty toxins in your body which contributes to dull skin, tired complexion and breakouts.
Yoga also floods the skin with oxygen and regulates our body’s hormones. You see, when hormones get out of whack, one or more of these undesirable things happen: breakouts, acne, weight gain, fatigue and other skin problems.
Another miracle that yoga makes is keeping a digestive track healthy. Now you might think, “How does digestion relate to good skin?” Unknown to many, digestive health is actually a very important factor in achieving a healthy and nourished skin. Without proper digestion, our body won’t be able to absorb all the nutrients that our skin needs. Good digestion also helps in flushing out our body’s toxins. Hence, good digestion promises a radiant skin, and thanks to yoga, you get to enjoy all these at no extra cost.
4 – You’ll be more confident
With better posture, glowing skin and a positive frame of mind, how can confidence take a back seat? And why do we need confidence? For one, it is key to performing better at anything you do — work, school, household chores, talking to people and even as simple as ordering in a restaurant! It also makes you significantly less prone to stress and able to take on challenges on a daily basis.
5 – You’ll be healthy (in mind, body and spirit)
Health is no news to yoga’s benefits. It keeps the entire body healthy by promoting detoxification, enhancing digestion, lowering blood pressure, improving health problems like asthma and heart disease and boosting the immune system.
Everyday, you go to work, attend school, go to the market, do household stuff or meet with friends. With a healthy body, mind and spirit (all thanks to yoga), you get to truly enjoy your day and maybe even exude that positivity to others.
6 – You can think better.
There have been studies about yoga being able to positively affect some regions of the brain that are responsible for cognition, memory, learning and emotional regulation. These things are very important in our daily lives. You get to think clearer, you get to formulate better ideas, you get to learn things faster and all at the same time, you get to battle stress, fear and anxiety.
7 – You will have inner peace.
Inner peace is important for everyone. With inner peace, you get to maintain a sense of inner harmony and balance, an ability to remain undisturbed and calm, and a good control of yourself even in the toughest of situations. With all the stressors that we face everyday — traffic, additional workload, etc. — inner peace helps us get through the day while maintaining a positive attitude towards things.
8 – You’ll stay energized.
Let’s say you’ve had a pretty hectic morning. It’s the middle of the day and you just had a hearty lunch. How do you feel?
Most people would kill to have an afternoon nap even just for a good 15 minutes. That’s normal. It’s the middle of the day, we just had a meal and it’s probably human nature to feel sleepy soon after. Sadly, time is too precious to sleep off at work or school or wherever you are. Good think yoga helps in increasing your energy. It’s like an energy drink that, again, costs ZERO bucks and more efficacy. The best thing about this is, you can perform it whenever, wherever. In fact, there is an endless list of yoga poses or asanas that does not need any equipment at all — not even a mat.
9 – You can say no to stress and hello to relaxation.
After a long day, all you want to do is relieve yourself from all the stresses and just relax. Yoga can help you with this. With a plethora of helpful breathing and relaxation techniques, you will surely be able to end your day stress-free.
10 – You will sleep well.
Yoga guarantees a restful sleep. In fact, it is highly recommended for pregnant women and people suffering with insomnia and other sleep disorders. Yoga is also a good way to unwind before bedtime. It has long been proven and tested, and with its very effective relaxation and breathing techniques, yoga is sure to pleasure you with a good night’s sleep. The best thing is, you get to wake up happy.
“Life is better when you bend.”
You see, yoga makes you more productive, relaxed and naturally happy. What’s even better is that contrary to popular belief, yoga is actually not exclusively for women. In fact, more and more men today practice yoga because of its core strengthening benefits and muscle enhancing powers. I mean, did you see how beautifully sculpted those yogi muscles are? Not only does it make your body look good, it also looks good in photos! And with a very photo-loving generation today, who doesn’t love a good Instagram snap once in a while, right?
Here are our top 7 favorite asanas for daily living (and don’t worry, these are perfect for beginners, intermediates and experienced yogis):
- Virabhadrasana III (Warrior 3)
The Warrior 3 is a remarkable pose that you can do at any time of any day but because it fortifies confidence, willpower and determination, most yoga enthusiasts do this in the morning. It builds inner strength as well as stamina and external strength especially in the lower body and core. This pose also fires up the Manipura, a primary chakra above the navel.
- Sirsasana Variation (Tripod Headstand Variations)
There are a lot of variations for the tripod headstand. Each pose gives a strong dose of empowerment, a great sense of balance and stability, and builds remarkable upper body and core strength.
- Malasana (Garland Pose)
Perfect for anytime yoga, the benefits of Malasana go way beyond the glutes, groins, hamstrings, core and back torso. It also aids in digestion as well as enhances flexibility and mobility.
- Natarajasana (Dancer Pose)
How beautiful is this pose? Not only does it look impeccable, it also conceives a surge of positive energy and an incredible equilibrium in both body and mind. Besides, who doesn’t want to have a moment of grace during exercise?
- Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose)
It’s always a perfect day to stretch! This pose lengthens your compressed spine and tight back, strengthens your core and helps relieve lower back pain. One advantage for this pose is that you won’t need any mat to do this. In fact, you can even do this anywhere! Plus, it’s super simple AND it looks great in pictures!
- Child’s Pose
This pose is incredibly relaxing. When you’re fatigued, ready to get a good night’s sleep or whenever you need a stress relief and a mental break, this pose does magic! The best thing is, yogis of all levels can easily do this.
- Viparita Karani (Legs-Up-The-Wall Pose)
This is an amazing pose to end a long day at work, school or even the mall. It is known to help attain quality sleep and it drains the legs in the most relaxing way. People who struggle with insomnia and other sleeping disorders find this pose very helpful.