Yoga is a type of exercise that I haven’t delved into until recently. And I can certainly say it has changed my life for the better. While I used to roll my eyes at anyone who would tell me how amazing and life-improving yoga is, I kind of get it now. While exercise is great for you in general, doing yoga surprised me with all of its wonderful benefits and health improvements. Here are some great benefits of yoga that not everyone tells you!
One of the many benefits of yoga that I found out was how much stronger my body has become after doing it. Naturally, I am a pretty weak person. I have small arms and have trouble pushing revolving doors. I even struggle to get up a flight of stairs sometimes. After doing yoga (and not even for that long, may I add) I can do all of those things easily and more often. It really will amaze you how much better you can feel after a couple of weeks worth of muscle strengthening. For me, it surely has improved my confidence and makes me feel like I can take on anyone!
Another wonderful perk I have discovered that should have been obvious from the beginning. Before doing yoga, I never truly realized how much exercise it could be. While you are doing a lot of relaxing poses, that isn’t all of what yoga is. In-between all that relaxation is where the hard moves and poses come in. Because let me tell you, the first class I took, I was struggling. The majority of the poses are ones that require you to do a good bit of planking, a lot of balancing on one foot and doing your best not to fall over. All of that equals a good bit of weight loss and some toning of some muscles I didn’t even know I had!
Protection From Injury
We have to admit, most sports are designed to hurt you unless you take the proper precautions in ensuring you don’t sprain an ankle or knock heads with someone as you compete to get the ball. Even in a no-contact sport like swimming, muscles are spread thin and it can take some time to get back to normal if they’re badly injured. With yoga, it is all about prevention and protection. The more you do yoga, the stronger your body and muscles get. When that happens, it makes it a tad bit harder to sprain anything that could be sprained. You’ll be surprised how hard you can push your body doing other sports the more you do yoga alongside them.
Out of all of the benefits of yoga, this is probably my favorite one. I love to eat. Some can argue that food is the whole reason people exercise, at least for some, and especially for me. You have no idea how happy it made me know that eating junk food all weekend didn’t affect my tummy area as harshly compared to when I barely exercised at all. While yoga is a relaxing endeavor, it can also tone your muscles and make you look like the healthiest version of yourself. And who wouldn’t want that?
This benefit surprised me more than it should have. After doing yoga for a few weeks, I slowly started to notice how much more easily I could touch my toes in the morning or reach for that mug on the second shelf in my cabinet when I used to always require a chair. My legs, arms, and toes don’t feel as strained every time I have to grab something a little out of my reach. If you end up trying yoga, you’ll also be pleasantly surprised how much-increased flexibility can help you in bed. It may not be a complete game-changer, but it can definitely make things more fun!
If your body likes to be bloated for no reason, then that is yet another reason to seek out all of the wonderful benefits of yoga. Yoga is designed to let the body release all of the unnecessary toxins that can cause unwanted inflammation in the face or body. If you do another exercise alongside yoga, like running or hiking, it is incredibly easy to have parts of your feet swell from all of that training. Yoga can help with that. If you struggle with this, do yourself a favor and try out a yoga class! I’m sure you won’t regret it.
Can Fight Depression
It may seem crazy, but there are a few studies that prove yoga can help. Depression is a battle that some are constantly fighting, and there are plenty of ways to try and combat it, but not all of them work. If you are at your loose ends, try and take a class. See how you feel afterward and continue it if you think it will do you some good. The reason why yoga can help fight depression is due to its ability to decrease levels of cortisol, a stress hormone that influences your brain’s levels of serotonin, which is that pesky little neurotransmitter that is associated with the disease itself. While there is never a guarantee, it never hurts to try something new. We can all use a little peace in our lives, and I believe yoga is one of the many things on this earth that can help us get some.