By Sangeetha Saran
As teachers, many of us already know the benefits of Yoga practice. Yet, the global masses are just beginning to become aware of the deeper benefits of a steady practice. During Yoga teacher training, we learn many skills, but the most important skill of all is communication. From the day a new student arrives or after years of practice, it is good to explain what students of various levels of experience should realistically expect from their Yoga practice.
For centuries, Yoga has been widely considered to have major health benefits in South Asia, and has recently become incredibly popular in the United States, with thousands of Americans beginning Yoga practice each year. Hatha Yoga can clearly benefit the practitioner physically, with fitness and flexibility, but routine practice can also lead to a number of less expected benefits.
Hatha Yoga, like any physical activity, can improve physical health when practiced routinely. What many do not know, however, are the specific ways in which Yoga may be able to help in relieving certain medical issues. Yoga has been shown to improve circulation and lower one’s heart rate.
Both of these effects can lead to a decrease in blood pressure and a stronger heart. Improved circulation has also been shown to aid in lowering cholesterol and in reducing the amount of sodium in the body. According to the Online Nurse Practitioner Schools website Yoga may decrease the level of triglycerides in the bloodstream. This would reduce the risk of heart disease. Of course, more studies will be needed before that claim can be clinically proven. Yoga can also improve one’s pain tolerance, making it an effective exercise regimen for those with chronic pain issues such as fibromyalgia or arthritis.
Perhaps one of the least often discussed benefits of Yoga is the effect that routine practice can have on one’s sex life. Yoga not only makes practitioners more flexible and improves dexterity, but it may also increase stamina and muscle control during sexual activity. What’s more, Yoga gives participants more self-confidence and promotes relaxation, both of which can significantly improve sexual experiences for practitioners in any age group.
Since Hatha Yoga is a physical activity, many do not consider that it may have effects on an individual’s emotional or mental health. Yoga can relieve stress and anxiety, and many also feel that it can greatly lessen the effects of depression.
Many long-time practitioners also report an improvement in memory and a drastic improvement in the ability to focus and concentrate. Overall, the benefits of Yoga create a sense of calmness and well-being, and helps to eliminate anger or hostility.
Whether one is seeking a great exercise choice to help with arthritis, diabetes, or depression, Yoga appears to be a perfect way for everyone to be more fit and happy. The wide variety of Yoga styles and programs make it ideal for practitioners of any age or level of ability. Even beginners will see the benefits of Yoga after just a few weeks of practice.
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