Yoga is steadily sweeping across the world, as more and more people discover the amazing benefits, mental, spiritual and physical, that this eastern traditional discipline brings. If you asked ten yoga masters what yoga is, you would probably get 10 different answers, as the practice gives people spiritual, metal and physical stimulation in many different forms, and with that in mind, here is our guide to taking up the eastern practice of yoga.
- Learning to focus the mind – In many respects, yoga is similar to meditation, in as much as it helps to develop focus and concentration, and the result of this is a calmer disposition and the ability to ride the stress waves that modern society brings. Most yoga practitioners hone in on their breathing, which is rhythmic, and this leads to an increased awareness, which is a very pleasant experience as endorphins are released into the bloodstream.
- The Right Equipment – If you search online, you will find a yoga equipment supplier, with our favourite yoga bolsters and a good quality mat, and such a supplier would have a library of e-books and DVDs on all aspects of yoga and the many forms it takes. A soft, breathable yoga mat really does make all the difference, and there is a wide range of colours and designs, with matching mats and bolsters for uniformity.
- Yoga Classes – There are two ways to learn how to practice yoga; you can enrol in a local yoga class, or follow some of the many yoga tutorials that can be found on YouTube, and with the current pandemic, you are probably better off staying at home and using the Internet to source suitable learning resources, of which there are many. Click here for more information on developing a healthy lifestyle, which is recommended reading for all.
- Physical Benefits of Yoga – The physical benefits include developing strength, flexibility, mobility and balance. Many athletes practice yoga for these very reasons, indeed some practice just prior to competing, as they feel it puts them in the right mindset for competition.
- Stress Reliever – Yoga is known to be a great stress reliever, and when coupled with meditation, one does feel a lot calmer and able to dismiss the tedious aspects of life that make us upset. If a person is stressed, this will negatively impact their well-being, and likely lead to a lack of sleep, which, in turn, causes other issues. Here is some Australian government information on health & well-being.
Various Forms of Yoga
There are many forms of yoga, such as:
- Iyenga – A combination of standing and seated postures, using props, which helps to develop flexibility and good posture.
- Viniyoga – For people with limited mobility, this focuses on breathing to encourage relaxation and increased awareness. Not too physical and would suit an elderly person.
- Hatha – Hatha is used for meditation preparation, and breathing is the focus, and while this is a slow pace, it can be hard to hold the poses.
If you search online and locate a yoga supplies website, you can acquire everything you need in a single shop, and then check out a few YouTube videos until you find one that feels right for you.