Guest Post: Five Reasons to Start Practicing Yoga Today

This is my first ever guest post which is very exciting! It’s from Carolyn Fallon and it’s all about how awesome yoga is. Enjoy! 

© KK

Yoga is an ancient art of physical movements, techniques and mental exercises first used in India over 2,000 years ago. After centuries of refinement and development, Yoga began to spread to regions outside of Central Asia. Today, yoga is one of the leading disciplines taught in the West to help students foster positive mind-body interaction. Here are five of the top reasons why yoga is a great exercise for people of all ages and walks of life.

1) Yoga is a great exercise
When most people think of exercise, they think about pushing the body to its limit and working to exhaustion. Exercise, however, need not be as intensive as it is often portrayed in the media. Supplemented by a modest amount of cardiovascular exercise, yoga is a great cornerstone to a sustainable, enjoyable exercise regimen. Further, its ancient roots ensure that the techniques have been tested for centuries, and students will learn skills that have been constantly improved for thousands of years.

2) Yoga helps with other physical activities
There was a time when many thought that physical benefits of yoga were limited. Stretching, for example, was viewed as only moderately useful for baseball or football players. Recently, however, this mindset is changing, and many are finding that yoga helps athletes compete in sports that seem wholly unrelated to yoga. It is not uncommon to hear about professional athletes in a wide range of sports taking up yoga to improve their performances on the field. Dr. Glen Axelrod of the Center for Orthopedic & Spine Care even claims, “Many professional athletic teams use yoga as an integral part of their training.”

3) Yoga helps ease the ageing process
Falls and poor joint health are two of the dangers of entering middle age and senior years (or your thirties if you are me! Lizzy). By helping improve flexibility, Yoga reduces strain on the body’s joints and muscles. Balance exercises help students learn to balance themselves and avoid potentially dangerous falls. The aging process has unavoidable effects, but many people are too quick to assume that everything they see in the media is unavoidable. By starting and maintaining a regular exercise routine, everyone can help themselves smooth this process as much as possible.

4) Yoga provides mental benefits
While most initially focus on the physical benefits of Yoga, its mental benefits quickly become apparent. Its techniques provide the benefits of meditation in a structured, enjoyable manner. Medical experts have been touting the need for relaxing and slowing down for the past several decades, and Yoga gives its students tools to accomplish this. Students all agree that the mental effects of regular Yoga practice help them navigate their day-to-day lives with grace in addition to improving their general mental state.

5) Yoga is a great social activity
Many students look forward to talking to others who are learning the art. The Yoga community is strong in the West, and there are local groups in almost every region of the United States and Europe. Taking Yoga classes gives students a group of friends with whom they can discuss Yoga and other healthy living ideas. Yoga students often share interests in diet, other forms of exercise and other techniques to improve one’s health, and new students will find a warm and inviting community.

Carolyn Fallon is a 20-something year old with a passion for life, fitness and overall well-being. She is an avid spinner, healthy cooking enthusiast and lover of life. Check out Carolyn’s blog

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