According to the International Yoga Federation, there are about 300 million people who practice yoga in the world regularly. Based on the yoga statistics in 2018, yoga is among the top 10 fitness trends in the world.
If you are marvelled by yoga’s explosive growth and popularity, don’t be; because people of all age groups have been practising this ancient Indian science of exercise and healing – since the inception of human civilization.
First, let’s understand the meaning of YOGA. Derived from the Sanskrit word Ýuj, Yoga means ‘to unite’. It symbolises perfect harmony between mind, body, soul and nature. Traditionally, yoga was practised to achieve Samadhi i.e., a state of oneness or complete absorption, in ancient India, around 2700 years ago.
With time, Yoga has begun focusing on postures, breathing, and concentration, exclusively. However, if the yoga asanas are performed well they come with loads of health benefits. Like Downward-Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana), is said to improve digestion, relax your muscles, and energize your body. Moreover, Yoga is believed to lower the blood sugar and LDL Cholesterol, and boost HDL Cholesterol. Therefore practising yoga has been found beneficial for people suffering from diabetes.
Here is the list of scientifically proven reasons why Yoga is important for our well-being and the health benefits of yoga:
Corrects posture and reduces chronic pain:
Nowadays, with restricted movement, long sitting hours on a chair and poor posture, people of all ages, from children to the elderly are being affected by a modern ailment called lower back pain.
Practising yoga poses like Surya Namaskara, Balasana, Trikonasana, Dhanurasana, and Utkatasana – stretches and strengthens both sides of the body, eventually improving your body posture and relieving pain in the back and neck.
Enhances muscle strength, flexibility, and balance:
People often complain that they have a stiff body, claiming they cannot bend or touch their toes. However, yoga is a balance between flexibility and strength, combining various asanas like Virabhadrasana II, Anjaneyasana, Paripurna Navasana, and practising them regularly helps in strengthening weak muscles and improving the flexibility of the body.
Improves metabolism and boosts weight lose:
Well, most of the people assume that yoga is not the right health alternative to lose weight and they strongly call it a Myth’. Performing high-intensity workouts, going to Zumba or Aerobics is not the only option to shed some weight, Yoga is another good alternative. However, Yoga will not burn out 500 calories in an hour as other exercises do, but it surely boosts the metabolism which burns fat faster.
Metabolism is responsible for converting food into energy and utilizing this energy in performing different bodily functions both mental and physical. A higher metabolism ensures greater calorie burn and thus, a faster weight loss. Several yoga asanas can be practised regularly to boost metabolism, some of them are – Marichyasana, Shalabasana, Janushirshasana, and Ustrasana.
Relieves stress and reduces anxiety:
Since we live in a fast-paced world, stress and anxiety govern our routine. From morning alarm clock and taking pills in the night to completing an assignment and submitting it. Our day-to-day life, from the most trivial to the most prominent, is filled with stress. However, it can be controlled by spending some time on the yoga mat.
Yoga combines both physical poses and controlled breathing, thus soothes the ever-running mind, relieves stress and offers repose. Many poses can be performed to reduce stress and anxiety; in particular, Hatha yoga will be a good choice to opt for stress management.
Lowers blood pressure thus reducing the risk of heart disease:
The cardiovascular disease worsens by stress. Practising yoga regularly helps in lowering stress level, eventually help reduce blood pressure. Savasana and Shisuasana, relaxes your entire mechanism, promoting blood circulation in the body; maintaining stable blood pressure.
Good sleep is synonymous with good health. Poor sleep cycle puts one at risk; inducing several diseases like obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. In today’s world where people are always surrounded by blue light waves from electronic devices, it’s difficult for most of us to fall asleep quickly.
Yoga helps in relaxing the mind, body and soul, naturally leading to better sleep.
Slows the effect of aging:
Yoga has anti-aging benefits, which makes it more popular among practitioners. By boosting the redevelopment of dead cells in the body, Yoga improves the skin quality by leaps and bounds. Its capability to reduce stress delays the natural wrinkle process of the skin.
Yoga asanas like Padmasana will help bring a glow to your skin. Yoga benefits are not only limited to the above-mentioned benefits; yoga is beneficial for the overall mental and physical wellness of a person, resulting in a better lifestyle. The person who wishes to live a long and healthy lifestyle should incorporate yoga in their daily routine.
So, let us know if you are ready to add yoga in your daily routine and if you wish to know more about Asanas, please comment in our comments section.
Meanwhile, you can also read about How To Stay Mentally Fit During Covid-19