Most jobs are stressful – even if you love what you do. But, as you’re probably aware, too much stress can take a physical and mental toll on your health. It’s very important to take some time for yourself in order to recharge and replenish. Studies have shown that yoga can offer a whole host of benefits including reducing blood pressure, better concentration and helping to reduce stress.
Yoga has great benefits for mental wellbeing and even spiritual wellbeing, but for this article we’ll be focusing on all the ways yoga can boost a person’s physical wellbeing.
Yoga is a physical practice that involves movement of the entire body.
This practice has many benefits for the body, including:
- Gently stretching and strengthening muscles
- Improving mobility
- Developing flexibility
- Aiding respiration
- Enhancing circulation
- Aiding digestion
- Promoting a general sense of wellbeing in your body
We’ll be looking in more depth below at some of the ways yoga aids a sense of physical wellbeing in our bodies.
Yoga has numerous preventive benefits, especially when the practice is developed in early childhood.
It can help in the prevention of accidents by increasing bodily awareness as well as agility.
Yoga has also been found to improve the immune system, which may then help in preventing infectious and contagious diseases.
Yoga supports both the production of blood and the circulation of blood throughout the body.
This happens when our muscles and blood vessels are stretched during various yoga poses.
Through an improved blood circulation, oxygen is supplied to the brain and other organs, helping our bodies with everyday function. It also helps to promote healthier skin and cell growth.
Yoga can help stretch the muscles surrounding the esophagus, stomach, and intestines.
When the muscles are tight around these areas, digestion and defecation are both difficult which can result in indigestion and constipation.
By stretching these muscles out, yoga helps to improve digestion and defecation.
It can also help to strengthen muscles such as your core muscles in your pelvis, lower back, hips and abdomen.
As your core stabilises your body, both supporting and balancing us, keeping the core strong is crucial for improved physical wellbeing.
Yoga poses are also good exercise to help loosen up and relax the tense muscles in your body.
The areas of the body that tend to carry the most stress are the neck, shoulders, and back. But other parts of the body (like the face, jaw, fingers, or wrists) can also benefit from simple yoga stretches.
The spine is one of the most important parts of your body. Without it, you could not keep yourself upright or even stand up.
Yoga practice can improve the alignment of the spine by balancing the left and right sides as well as the front and back of the body (with a balanced practice of forward and backward bends). For example, standing forward bends help to decompress the discs of the lower spine.
During certain yoga poses, the ground, with the aid of gravity and body weight, helps to flatten the spine out a bit.
This improvement to the spine is essential for peak physical health and wellbeing.
Managing chronic conditions
Yoga has been scientifically proven to help with the following conditions:
- Stroke rehabilitation
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Alzheimer’s Disease
- Nervous System Disorders
- Chronic pain, which can be caused by a sedentary lifestyle, fitness injuries, vehicle accidents, surgery and older age
Yoga releases tension from the muscles and increases mobility in the joints by stretching and lengthening the tight muscle.
This release in the muscles and joints helps to decrease chronic pains in the neck, shoulders, back, hips and knees.
How much yoga can help with these chronic conditions will depend entirely on the kind of practice you engage with, and how frequently you stick with the practice.
Through a consistent practice that feels right for you, the symptoms of chronic conditions such as trembling and pain may become more easily managed.
With all these factors in mind, a long lasting yoga practice has the ultimate potential to increase our physical wellbeing no matter what our physical condition.