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Yoga

Yoga

 

Yoga is an ancient practice connecting the mind and body, derived from India more than 2,500 years ago. Most people only know one dimension of yoga, known as the asanas, or poses, however yoga is a combination of meditation, breathing techniques and movement.

 

The yoga postures help to strengthen and realign the body, ensuring that it functions effectively. Yoga can be practiced alone or in combination with other forms of cardiovascular and strength exercises.      

 

Benefits  

One of the main principles of yoga is mindfulness. Mindfulness describes the practice of living in the present moment. Through practicing yoga, mindfulness can also benefit other areas of your life such as increasing mental awareness and reducing stress levels.  Other benefits include increased flexibility and strength, improved posture and balance and also rehabilitation from injury. Digestive issues may be reduced from increased blood flow and the massage of internal organs, and musculoskeletal pain may be reduced from gentle stretching and ease of pressure.      

 

Types

There are many different types of yoga that can be practiced. The most common form is ‘Hatha Yoga’ and it is usually the best option for beginners as it is gentle and slow. In general, each type of yoga will follow a basic structure and cover standing, sitting and inverted postures. Other styles of yoga include:  

  • Vinyasa Flow Yoga - a vigorous, fast paced class designed to improve strength and cardiovascular ability,
  • Bikram Yoga - a series of 26 postures practiced in a heated room in order to increase flexibility, and  
  • Yin Yoga - a very gentle, restorative yoga practice, used to realign ligaments and tendons in the body.  

 

What to expect  

People of all ages and abilities can practice yoga. If it is your first class, ensure that you tell your teacher and inform them of any injuries you may have. Wear comfortable clothing, do not have anything to eat for a few hours before your class and be mindful of other participants.  

 

Disclaimer  

The content displayed on this webpage is intended for informational purposes and is a guide only. It does not replace or substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.   Information contained on this webpage must be discussed with an appropriate healthcare professional before making any decisions or taking any action based on the content of this webpage.  

 

Sources

https://www.yogaaustralia.org.au/what-is-yoga  

http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Pilates_and_yoga_the_health_benefits   http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcpdf.nsf/ByPDF/Yoga/$File/Yoga.pdf

 

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