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The Power of Yoga

Yoga is an ancient practice of exercise and meditation, followed in India and her neighboring states. Since 2015, 21st June has been celebrated every year as the International Yoga Day to attract people into yoga, which has extensive health benefits. Each pose has its own advantages and also requires daily practice. The beginners should try easy postures and moves, and only after mastering them should they move to more advanced forms of yoga.

For the limitation of this article, we have listed down the following health benefits of yoga, along with three examples in each category.

1)Yoga for Mind Relaxation :

Relaxing the mind and increasing one’s mental concentration is a challenge nowadays due to the fast-paced life. Along with physical exercises, yoga also targets mental wellness and refreshment of our mind. Yoga is a quick and effective way to remove mental stress, fear, anxiousness, and distractions and focus well on the current job. While Savasana or lying back on the floor with mind rested can be chosen as one of the best ways of relaxation, some good forms of yoga in this category are Balasana (child pose) and Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (bridge pose).

Balasana (child pose)
Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (bridge pose)

2)Yoga for Meditation :

Meditation could have fallen under the previous category, but meditation not only relieves the mind but also promotes breathing and maintains posture. Yoga gives the importance of breathing well while in a sitting position, which may not always be relaxing. Pranayama is a good breathing exercise where air through each nostril is regulated. However, two good meditation postures are Padmasana (lotus pose) and Vajrasana (diamond pose).

Padmasana (lotus pose)
Vajrasana (diamond pose)

3)Yoga for Blood Circulation :

This is another parameter where yoga gives a lot of importance. It helps you from fatigue, dizziness, and sudden fall of blood pressure. Blood circulation can be improved by simply standing with arms stretched upwards, called mountain pose or Tadasana. However, some better poses are Adho Mukha Svanasana (downward dog pose) and Trikonasana (triangle pose).

Adho Mukha Svanasana (downward dog pose)
Trikonasana (triangle pose)

4)Yoga for Body Balance :

We may think how our body balance is helpful, but this is one of the most vital parameters that make us walk, prevent us from falling, and achieve a quick reaction time. Utthita Hasta Padangusthasana, which is raising one leg sideways and holding the toe with one hand, is a good example in this regard. Postures that primarily focus on body balance are Vrikshasana (tree pose) and Garudasana (eagle pose).

Vrikshasana (tree pose)
Garudasana (eagle pose)

5)Yoga for Core Strength :

Yoga believes in being more robust from the inside, not just showing muscles on the outside. That is why we have many core exercises that form a part of yoga. Surya Namaskar is one of the best routines to be followed that has a number of advantages including engaging the core. Individual core engaging yoga exercises are Phalakasana (plank pose) and Utkatasana (chair pose).

Phalakasana (plank pose)
Utkatasana (chair pose)

6)Yoga for Flexibility :

Increasing flexibility has many health benefits like less muscle tension, greater range of motion, a lower risk of injuries, and better posture. Yoga is one of the safest and most effective ways of getting flexible. However, yoga stresses that our body takes time to learn, and we must not hurt ourselves while performing yoga. Parsvottanasana, a simple forward bending exercise, may be an excellent choice, to begin with. Two good asanas for improving flexibility are Anjaneyasana (low lunge) and Dhanurasana (bow pose).

Anjaneyasana (low lunge)
Dhanurasana (bow pose)

7)Yoga for Back Stability :

It is always said that prevention is better than cure. These categories of exercises may help you not only to get rid of back pain but may also prevent back pain from coming back. Chakravakasana or cat-cow stretch may be a simple option to try at first, while Matsyendrasana (seated twist) or Salabhasana (locust pose) are advanced choices to stabilize the back, correct posture, and remove back pains, if any.

Matsyendrasana (seated twist)
Salabhasana (locust pose)

So which one of these is your favorite form of exercise or yoga. Did yoga change your lifestyle in some way? You may share your experience in the comment section below.

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Written by – Himadri Paul

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