Can practicing yoga on a regular basis be beneficial for me?

Yogi Cameron Alborzian
Alternative & Complementary Medicine

Practicing yoga, whether it's practicing the entirety of the eightfold path (abstentions, self-observances, posture, breathing, sense control, concentration, meditation, and oneness), or it's focusing specifically on postures like most of the people in the West tend to do, is intended to entirely benefit all who practice it.

Yoga as a general science and discipline was developed many centuries ago by sages in India. Its purpose is quite simple: to help the practitioner to end the suffering they endure through the fluctuations of their mind. These fluctuations are what cause us to feel disappointed when we don't get a job we want, angry when we're cut off in traffic, and distressed that we haven't made more of our life. Through the eightfold-path outlined above, we learn to control the mind and not allow situations to affect us in such a negative way--there's a better job right around the corner, the other driver may be in the midst of a life-threatening emergency, and life may present the best opportunity we've ever had when we're more than halfway through it.

Most of us in the West start off our yoga education with postures. If, however, we really crave the end of our own personal suffering, we begin exploring the other aspects of the practice as well. Consider the benefits of all aspects of a yoga practice when seeking out the next step in your practice.

Can practicing yoga on a regular basis be beneficial for me?

Yoga has tons of benefits. There are a variety of Yoga's that you can do and they have different purposes.

  1. Power Yoga for more of a fast pace cardiovascular pump.
  2. Viniyoga for pain relief.
  3. Hot Yoga for more of a detoxifying and cleansing feeling.
  4. Iyengar Yoga for posture and breathing control.

Yoga has been shown to improve arthritis and help with back pain. Yoga can increase your flexibility, develop strength, help lower your level of stress and increase your physical well-being. Yoga can be used as a form of preventive medicine for injuries and corrective exercise. If you are a little un-coordinated, Yoga also helps balance, stability and mobility.

You should do Yoga if you're physically fit to do so but, don't leave out cardio and strength training and enjoy all the benefits derived from it.

If yoga is something you truly enjoy then yes it will be beneficial for you to practice.  Yoga will help increase flexibility, decrease soreness, improve balance, and may help decrease stress.  If those are areas in which you want to focus, which I believe should be, then yes, yoga will be a great form of exercise to practice.  However, be sure to incorporate other forms of exercise as well, i.e. strength training and cardiovascular training.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.