Yoga: Balancing Your Mind and Body

Women in a group yoga classYoga is an ancient practice that started in India. These days, many people use it as a way to relieve stress, lower blood pressure, improve alertness, and even control body weight.
Yoga has different forms of approaches and styles, but all of them combine a mind-body approach that helps practitioners to clear the mind and control the body's actions. In many yoga retreats, whether in Cambodia, India or Australia such as Vagabond Temple, these styles are used to put practitioners in a meditative state and improve their mental well-being. 
But whatever style you choose, yoga focuses on three aspects to help the mind and body focus.

1. Poses

Yoga uses a series of postures to enhance flexibility and strength. These poses require the practitioner to control their muscles from relaxed to difficult positions. Sometimes these poses require you to stretch your muscles to enhance their flexibility and improve tone.

2. Breathing

Controlling breath intake is essential in yoga. The intake of air through the nostrils or mouth helps you to focus and clear your mind. Some approaches even teach their practitioners to breath in one nostril.

3. Meditation

Many practitioners see meditation as the most important part of yoga. Some advocates consider it as a mental relaxation technique to relieve psychological stress instead of a spiritual exercise. 

Yoga for Health

These days, yoga has become the go-to physical exercise of those who want to improve muscle control and flexibility. Aside from this, many people have cited the following as yoga's surprising benefits.

1. Control of chronic diseases

Yoga has an effect in reducing risk factors for chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, insomnia, depression, and even chronic pain. People experience an improvement after a few weeks of doing yoga.

2. Fitness

Though yoga may be seen as inactive, many practitioners experience increased balance, flexibility, and even strength after a few weeks of yoga.

3. Improves Mood

The practice also helps people to improve their mood. This effect probably comes from the meditation and relaxation exercises, as these all ensure that we stay focused and concentrate on what needs to be done in our lives.
Yoga is not just for the Indian gurus anymore; it's for anyone who wants to achieve a well-balanced mind and body.