What is Yoga

Yoga is the oldest and most renowned personal development system in the world, derived from ancient Indian sages thousands of years ago.

The term yoga means to ‘yolk’ or ‘unite’ body, mind and spirit to create a state equilibrium, harmony and balance within ourselves and the environment we live in. It promotes right living and empowers us to be the very best version of ourselves.

Why Should I Practise Yoga?
Everybody at every age should “do” yoga! We need yoga now more than ever in today’s fast-paced, frantic and demanding society. Benefits include:

  • Increased Strength, Vitality and Flexibility
  • Better Concentration and Increased Awareness
  • Improved ability to Manage and Cope with Stress
  • Positivity
  • Deep Relaxation

What is ‘Hatha’ Yoga and how does it work?
Hatha Yoga focuses on the physical body. It incorporates postures, breathing, hand gestures, contractions, concentration, relaxation and meditation techniques that challenge, restore, heal and purify the body and mind.

There are six main groups of yoga postures: standing, inverted, twists, back bends, forward bends and side bends.

Physical Benefits
The benefits extend far beyond the physical body, but this is where we start.

Yoga improves flexibility, builds muscle and bone strength, perfects the posture, strengthens cartilage and joints, supports the spine, increases circulation, boosts immunity, regulates blood pressure, lowers blood sugar, improves balance, conserves and regulates energy, tones the entire body, expands breathing capacity, enhances the elasticity of the lungs, and above all, balances the entire physical body keeping it in radiant health and excellent condition.

Mental Benefits
Life has a tendency of pulling us in every direction and our poor senses are over-stimulated and on constant overdrive. As such we waste vital energy without even realising.

Yoga gives us the opportunity to take respite from the daily rush; to stop and breathe; and allows the mind to have space, freedom and peace. From this peace and stillness within the mind we are better able to accept, focus, concentrate and apply ourselves in our day-to-day lives, living more peacefully and efficiently, and enabling us to better deal with the strains and stresses that do occur in our everyday lives.

Spiritual Benefits
Believe it or not, happiness is our birth-right, and yet many of us are just going through the motions of life without actually fully experiencing and appreciating the beauty that is both within and all around us. Yoga delves deep into the self to provide an emotional, energetic and spiritual experience, nurturing the soul and clearing the path towards self-acceptance and realization, and ultimately, happiness.

 

There is so much to say about the benefits of yoga that it’s easier to feel the effects by attending a class. As Swami Sivananda says "An ounce of practise is worth a tonne of theory!"