GUEST POST BY ANNE HAILE
Have you ever thought of trying yoga? Let me try and persuade you to take it up. I’ve been practicing and teaching yoga for 16 years now and its helped me in so many ways, I would love you to enjoy it’s whole body benefits too.
A quick word of warning, one class can make you feel a bit better but you will need to keep going for the benefits to continue.
10 WAYS YOGA BENEFITS YOU
( In no particular order).
- Stress relief and relaxation. Deep breathing and meditation are an integral part of most yoga classes. You will feel the stress slip away. Concentration improves and moods lighten.
- Higher general fitness levels. Apart from a little walking the only exercise I do is yoga. The routines and exercises we practice in a yoga class improve your balance and strengthen and lengthen your muscles. Your bones are strengthened at the same time. Wow, that’s a lot for just an hour 2 or 3 x’s a week.
- Improved flexibity. Are you struggling to bend down or twist around? You certainly don’t need to be super bendy before you start yoga, the flexibility comes gradually as you practice yoga.
- Better Sleep. As you are less anxious and more relaxed your sleep quality improves. At the end of a class we normally do a little meditation. Practiced regularly you will sleep deeper and longer ( if you want to). I am sure you can imagine the positive effect more sleep will have on your life
- Joint health. Conditions such as arthritis can be prevented or improved by regular yoga sessions. Most of our joints contain synovial fluid. This is thick and sticky unless we move regularly. During yoga this fluid becomes thinner and so our joints move more easily and are less likely to hurt.
- Improved Balance. We practice our balancing exercises in yoga. Better balance means fewer falls as we age and so less injury. Falls and loss of balance are the main reasons for people having to live in care. We all want to avoid that.
- Live Longer. Yoga is a great anti ageing treatment. Have you seen all the lovely centenarians in the news doing yoga? Some are still driving and teaching yoga themselves at over 100 years old. In interviews, they all credit their longevity to regular practice. Its not just about actually living longer, with regular practice you look better as you age – we even have specific poses to reduce wrinkles!
- New friends. I have made lots of lovely new friends in yoga classes. There is an opportunity to chat before and after class. Friendship often starts with the lady next to you on the mat. As you struggle and succeed together you feel a common bond.
- Assists Detox. Many of the twisting and squeezing postures are designed to help us start the detox process. This helps us to feel better and our skin become clearer.
- Fun. I may just have left one of the biggest one of my 10 ways yoga benefits you until last. It’s fun, most people who try it do enjoy themselves. If not then find a different class or yoga teacher and try again as you may just have been unlucky. There are so many types of yoga out there that one is going to be right for you.
I hope to see you on a mat one day.
About Anne Haile
Anne Haile is a photographer and yoga teacher who sometimes dabbles in antiques. Her blog Annes Photos is dedicated to her photography. Anne gives away free beautiful digital images / stock photos when you sign up to her newsletter.