Holistic Health Benefits of Yoga
We all know how important physical exercise is. Being physically active has both short and long term health benefits, including increased energy, stronger bones, muscles, and joints, and a reduced risk of developing chronic conditions, such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
Regular physical exercise is also beneficial to our mental health. Oftentimes, these benefits — including increased concentration, improved overall mood, and better quality sleep — come as a natural by-product of getting our bodies moving and having more blood pumping through our veins. Some forms of exercise, however, place a particular focus on the connection between the mind and body. Yoga is one such activity.
There’s a reason yoga has been practised for thousands of years. It’s a proven way of improving our health from a holistic perspective, targeting physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional wellbeing, with the understanding that all these facets are interconnected.
Mount Martha Yoga offers yoga classes for individuals of all ages and abilities, adhering to the belief that everyone can benefit from this holistic approach to health. Looking forward to 2022, taking up yoga in Mornington could be one of the best things you do for your overall wellbeing.
Improve your physical health
Our bodies can do amazing things, which we often take for granted until injury or old age slows us down. Whether you are looking to improve your lean muscular strength or want to regain mobility, yoga offers considerable benefits to your physical health and fitness.
These benefits include:
- Improved flexibility: The word ‘flexibility’ is often associated with being able to perform impressive physical feats, like doing the splits. In reality, having supple, flexible muscles is essential to perform many day to day tasks. Improved flexibility is associated with reduced injuries, better posture and balance, and overall enhanced physical performance.
- Enhanced strength: Building strength doesn’t have to come from intense weight sessions at the gym. Having to hold specific poses for a period of time requires you to bear your own body weight, testing and helping build lean muscular strength.
- Improved respiration: Breathing might be an involuntary movement, but you can still improve your performance. Practising yoga promotes relaxation, which has a direct effect on your rate and intensity of breath. Relaxed, controlled breathing is associated with reduced blood pressure, equal levels of oxygen and carbon dioxide in the blood, and increased physical energy.
Take care of your mind
With close to 1 in 2 Australians experiencing some sort of mental disorder during their lifetime, it’s incredibly important that we take positive, proactive steps to protect and strengthen our minds. Surrounding yourself with supportive friends and family, speaking to a healthcare professional, and making sure you don’t spend too much time staring at screens are all good strategies. In addition, setting aside a period of time to spend in mindful meditation can be particularly valuable. By dedicating yourself to regular yoga practice, you can expect to experience:
- Reduced anxiety: Anxiety is directly related to stress, a physical sensation that invokes a racing heart, tense muscles, and a high respiration rate. We experience stress when the body’s ‘fight or flight’ response is activated by the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). The parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), on the other hand, is responsible for controlling bodily functions at rest. Practising yoga activates the PNS, strengthening its ability to control and reduce the physical sensations of stress.
- Improved sleep: Sleep is arguably one of the most restorative tools we have at our disposal. Getting enough sleep — generally believed to be between 7 and 9 hours per night — means we are less likely to fall sick, can maintain a healthy weight, and improves your general mood. Yoga encourages mindfulness and teaches you many important breathing techniques that can be used to induce sleep.
- Boosted concentration: A typical person juggles a number of responsibilities at one time. The fact that some scientists believe that the demands of modern life have significantly reduced our attention span only makes concentrating on these tasks more difficult. Yoga demands concentration. It asks that you focus on one particular pose for a period of time and trains your brain to find a focal point around which you can arrange your thoughts.
Mount Martha Yoga
If you’re thinking about taking up yoga in Mornington, Mount Martha Yoga should be your first port of call. As an experienced practitioner and teacher, Emily is passionate about making yoga accessible for all. She has witnessed first hand the holistic health benefits that yoga provides and believes that private and semi-private lessons offer the perfect opportunity to tailor a practice according to your strengths, goals, and abilities.
Emily teaches from her own studio in the beautiful hills of Mount Martha but can also travel if required. Stop searching for “yoga classes near me” and contact Emily today to learn more about her teaching philosophy and how yoga can improve your physical and mental wellbeing.