This week I am introducing a new app I found called “Daily Yoga”.
This week I would like to talk about the benefits of a yoga practice:
- Improved flexibility
- Builds muscle strength
- Improves posture- Unfortunately these days, we spend a lot of time leaning over our desks or computers, yoga helps to extend the back and shoulders.
- Improves Joint health- You take your joints through their full range of motion when you practice yoga preventing arthritis. Joint cartilage is like a sponge that receives fresh nutrients only when its fluid is squeezed out and a new supply can be soaked up.
- Protects your spine if you go through the full range of motion of backbends, forward bends, and twists.
- Improves bone health- Weight-bearing exercise strengthens bones and prevents osteoporosis. Many postures in yoga require that you lift your own weight and some help strengthen the arm bones.
- Yoga gets your blood flowing- Relaxation exercises in yoga can help your circulation, especially in your hands and feet. Yoga also gets more oxygen to your cells. Yoga also boosts levels of hemoglobin and red blood cells, which carry oxygen to the tissues. It also thins the blood by making platelets less sticky and cutting the level of clot-promoting proteins in the blood, which can decrease in heart attack and stroke risk.
- Drains your lymphatic system- When you contract and stretch muscles, move organs around, and come in and out of yoga postures, you increase the drainage of lymph (a viscous fluid rich in immune cells), which helps your body fight infection, destroy cancer cells, and dispose of waste products of cells.
- Increases aerobic endurance-When you get your heart rate into the aerobic range, you lower your risk of heart attack. Flow or vigorous classes can boost your heart rate into aerobic range. Yoga has been found to lower the resting heart rate, increase endurance, and improve your maximum uptake of oxygen during exercise.
- Yoga can help decrease your blood pressure
- Lowers the levels of the stress hormone cortisol- High levels of cortisol are linked to depression, osteoporosis, high blood pressure, and insulin resistance and “food-seeking behavior” . The body takes those extra calories and distributes them as fat in the abdomen!
- Improves depression by increasing serotonin and decreasing monoamine oxidase and cortisol.
- May help you lose weight since it burns calories like other forms of exercise
- Lowers blood sugar in diabetics by lowering cortisol and adrenaline levels
- Lowers LDL (bad) cholesterol and boosts HDL (good) cholesterol
- Improves focus- Yoga practice improves coordination, reaction time, memory, and even IQ!
- Aids relaxation- Yoga helps slow breathing, and encourages focusing on the present, shifting the balance from the sympathetic nervous system to the parasympathetic nervous system, lowering respiratory and heart rates, decreasing blood pressure, and increasing blood flow to the intestines and reproductive organs
- Improves balance
- Releases tension in your body
- Relieves stress which can decrease your risk for irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers, migraines, lupus, insomnia, heart attacks, and other diseases related to stress
- Improves breathing helping you to take deeper breaths!
- Yoga, as with any exercise, can help constipation
- Relieves chronic pain syndromes such as arthritis, back pain, fibromyalgia, carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Calms your mind like meditation!
- May help you lower your medication dosage if you have asthma, high blood pressure, Type II diabetes , or obsessive-compulsive disorder
- Supports your fascia (connective tissue)
I think a lot of people could benefit from some daily yoga! In the coming weeks, I will have more videos with yoga and stretching exercises. Stay tuned!
McCall, Timothy. “38 Health Benefits of Yoga.” Yoga Journal. Cruz Bay Publishing, Inc. 28 August 2007. Web. Accessed 29 November 2015. <http://www.yogajournal.com/article/health/count-yoga-38-ways-yoga-keeps-fit/>.