It’s often talked about how yoga changes your mindset and your ability to handle stress and anxiety. But along with these changes to your mind and spirit also come several amazing benefits for your body.
There are a lot of changes that go on in your body when you begin consistently utilizing a yoga practice. Not only do you become more mobile and flexible, but you can potentially lose weight. Also, due to constant movement, you can reduce pain and become more aware of your body’s capabilities. That, coupled with improved breathing, gives you an all-around incredible metamorphosis when it comes to your mind, body, and soul.
So instead of focusing on the mental and emotional benefits (which are vast), we’re going to take a look at how yoga changes your body so that you have a full understanding of the many benefits you can take advantage of when incorporating yoga into your life.
Yoga: A Quick Overview
Just like with anything, the best way to understand how something affects you is to understand what it is at its core. Yoga is a practice that has been globally spread over the last several decades and has its roots in Indian culture. The practice of yoga has been done for millennia and is focused on movements and thoughts that help elevate your physical and mental health.
It is a combination of physical activity mixed with meditational practices that allows you to stretch your muscles and mind to balance your energies, which in turn will promote a happier, healthier life. The practice incorporates a multitude of different poses (depending on the yoga practice you are using) that help align and strengthen your core muscles.
By doing this, you also begin opening up your mind to understand the world within as well as without. Yoga helps you induce a calming effect that has a plethora of advantages. On top of the mental changes that can help impact your body, there are also many ways yoga changes your body physically.
Changes To Your Body: What A Daily Practice Can Do For You
Most people know about the mental changes that come with utilizing yoga. This includes things like the ability to be less reactive, as well as to understand your emotions. All of this combined makes it easier to stay in the moment whenever anything stressful happens.
But there is a wealth of ways that yoga can change your body. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest:
Because of its focus on controlled movement and stretching of the muscles, one of the biggest changes to the body is going to come with your mobility as well as flexibility.
The mixture of poses that are included in a yoga practice is intended to improve your flexibility and also build muscle strength. All of this will help you become more mobile as well as help with posture.
Though it’s not a focus of yoga because of its active nature, it is also a good way to lose weight. Of course, there are types of yoga that are going to be better at this body change, like hot yoga.
Just like with any other exercise, as you build muscle or tone, you’re going to be sweating and that means that you’re going to be burning calories. So one of the body changes you can count on is a toning and slimming of the body.
Including yoga in your workouts will help you become more adept at other forms of exercise as well. The focus on breathing will change your lung capacity and then the strengthening and toning of the muscles and flexibility will give you more mobility, as we said. This in turn will make other exercises like running or even different types of sports easily adapted to.
Chronic Pain Reduction
For those that may suffer from a pre-existing condition that causes chronic pain, yoga can help reduce the pain. This is especially true if you deal with back pain. The ability to stretch and move can change your body so that you are better able to handle the pain and also have less of it.
Body awareness comes in the form of understanding the movements of your muscles and joints. By becoming more aware of your body and the physical changes that are happening in it, you can reduce the chance of injuries.
Breathing is key to everything in life. By focusing on breathing, yoga allows you to become one with your body. Also, with improved breathing, one of the body changes is that your circulatory system is going to work better.
With more oxygen, your brain and other vital organs are going to get more blood flow. That’s going to improve your physical health by allowing your brain to function at its highest capacity.
Getting the Most From Your Yoga Practice: Some Key Tips For You
The truth is that there are many different ways yoga changes your body. But to get the most out of your practice, you have to take your practice one step further. So below, we’ve gathered together a couple of key tips that we think can help you get the most from your yoga practice.
Step Into The Spiritual
Yoga can be used simply as an exercise in addition to your physical routine throughout the week. It could also be used as a way to help with mental health. But if you want a full impact and 360-degree effect on your body and mind, going beyond the physical aspect of yoga is important. Looking at the core principles of yoga, which include things like meditation and breath work, can elevate the results you get by incorporating them into your life.
Build Your Knowledge
Stepping into the other aspects of yoga is important, but if you want more out of the practice besides the changes in the body and mind, you have to dig deeper and build your knowledge.
Talk to practitioners and read yogic texts that build on what you know so that you can understand the principles and guidelines behind the practice itself. This will bring a whole new light to everything having to do with yoga and allow you to get more from your practice.
Build A Home Practice
A lot of people that dive into yoga focus on going to classes. But this tends to be a once-a-week occurrence or maybe twice a week, and that may not be enough of a commitment to see a lot of changes in your body. So why not find ways to incorporate it into a home practice as well.
This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to go through all the steps that you do in your actual yoga sessions with an instructor. Maybe just incorporate a few movements every morning so that you can keep up the momentum.
Be An Explorer
There is a wide range of disciplines when it comes to yoga. Each one will have its own focus and benefits when it comes to your mental and emotional as well as physical body.
So explore different types and different teachers. Really look at what these practices bring to you and find the ones that you feel will benefit you the most.
There are so many ways that yoga changes your body. Some of them come from the mental and emotional stability and capabilities that are cultivated during the practices. But others come from the actual physical exertion of stretching your muscles and executing the yoga poses properly.
No matter what happens though, by including yoga in your daily life you will for sure be working your way to finding a happier and healthier path when it comes to your wellness journey.