Wanna relieve stress? Inhale… Exhale… Just by reading these two words, you will immediately think of a serene place with a light atmosphere, where people gather to do their yoga poses.
Yoga has long been known as an activity to relieve stress. The practice includes stress-reducing techniques, such as exercise, breathing control, mind-clearing, and body relaxation. As this activity continues to become popular, more and more people are starting to see the benefits you can reap from this ancient practice.
Having an established yoga routine can help you experience the difference it can make in your life. You can always consult with a yoga instructor who can guide you through the process, for starters.
How exactly does yoga help relieve stress?
When you say that yoga can relieve stress, it is almost always considered a fact. No one questions this statement, as yoga has been proven to reduce stress. But, what entails yoga that allows it to be a stress-reducing activity? Here are some reasons why:
Yoga is a form of exercise.
Based on scientific evidence, exercise releases endorphins, which are hormones that help alleviate pain and relieve stress. Thus, if yoga is exercise, then it also releases the same hormones.
Hatha Yoga, the physical practice of different yoga postures, is considered exercise. This type of yoga consists of various kinds, depending on the pacing and area of focus. Some exercises are focused on stretching, thus, slow. In contrast, some can be done fast and can be described as an actual workout.
If you want to relieve stress, there is no absolute yoga style that is superior. It all goes down to what you can do and whether it fits your personal style.
Moreover, yoga helps relieve stress by releasing tension stored in the body. This tension can make you feel tight, which may eventually cause pain. Through stretching, yoga can release these problem areas. Some of these areas include (but are not limited to) the shoulders, hips, and even your back.
Yoga is about breath control.
If yoga has a component that deals with physical postures, it also has one that focuses on breath control. This component of yoga is called Pranayama, or breathwork.
Pranayama is essential in doing yoga. It is also not just something you can practice while you’re on the mat. It is also something you can bring into your day-to-day life.
Yoga helps you become more aware of breathing, and you are taught to use this to relax your body. Breathing may seem like a task that should not require thinking, but why does yoga focus on it? Regulated breathing, like stretching, can help release tension that builds up on your mental and emotional aspects.
By learning how to regulate breathing, you can find yourself as a more peaceful person who can get away from stressful situations just by breathing.
Yoga clears the mind.
All people, young or old, are constantly bombarded with things to think about. Whether it is a big decision like shifting careers, or a small one, like what to eat for tomorrow’s breakfast, we are constantly boggled with situations. Most often, these thoughts make our minds clouded and disorganized. The entanglement of these thoughts can cause stress and tiredness.
Yoga can help tame this chaotic mind. First off, the breathing work mentioned earlier can help you focus on what really should be prioritized at the moment. You are taught to focus on what’s right before you through breathing work without worrying about the future or the past.
In Pranayama, you focus solely on your exhales and inhales so that you will not think about the things that constantly bother you. In this way, slowly by slowly, the chaos starts to calm. This is meditation, one of the components of yoga that makes it stand out among stress-reduction activities.
Also, with asana, the yoga component concerning poses is considered a form of meditation. The poses in yoga asana may look simple, yet they require utmost concentration. You will set aside other worries and thoughts to give way to a well-deserved break.
Yoga is all about relaxation.
Did you know that yoga sessions end with around five to ten minutes of just doing savasana (corpse pose)? This yoga pose is characterized by lying straight on your back, with your hands on the side— like a corpse. At first, relaxing in this position may seem complex and intimidating. Still, eventually, it will serve its purpose of letting you release everything that holds you back from relaxation.
Savasana helps you go back to the real world with a cleansed and refreshed feeling, along with a stronger mindset that will help you face the challenges of the real world.
Moreover, Yoga Nidra, another yoga practice, is characterized by more prolonged and more profound periods of relaxation. This type of yoga can also help you practice meditation and is a surefire way of reducing stress.
Yoga helps you connect with your spiritual self.
As humans, our definition of spirituality differs and is not only limited to religion. In yoga, you can also connect with your spirituality in any form you deem spiritual. You may feel connected with God or your gods or the possibility of transcending oneself.
Moreover, it helps you be more aware of being mindful and helps you with being self-compassionate. Overall, yoga does not only release stress; it also lifts you up.
Other benefits of yoga
Aside from relieving stress, yoga also has the following benefits:
- Reduces anxiety
- Reduces levels of stress hormones
- Sound sleep
- Improves medical conditions
- Lowers blood pressure
- Helps in smoking cessation
- Relieves asthma and allergy symptoms
- Aids in growing your spirit
- It helps realize the self
- Lowers heart rate
- Slows down aging
- Reduces tension in the muscles
- Increased flexibility
- Increases strength
Yoga for Balance
If you have been looking for ways to relieve stress, find balance in your life, or even increase strength, you can put yoga on your list. This ancient practice has been proven numerous times in terms of facing the challenges of the modern world. Yoga is a well-loved practice that even up to now, many people are still swearing by the benefits you can get from doing it.
Suppose you are interested in starting your yoga journey, In Balance Wellness can help you with it. Feel free to browse their website for their services or schedule an appointment with them. There is no other way of starting yoga than being in the hands of experts.