The origins of Yoga trace back to over 5,000 years ago in northern India. Some yoga techniques are recorded to be as old as India itself. It is amongst the six schools of philosophy in Hinduism and is also a major part of Buddhism and its meditational practices. Yoga gets its name from the Yoga Sutras, which are texts that described how to rid the mind of all distraction and achieve pure focus.
Today Yoga still maintains the three elements of its practice, physical postures, breathing exercises, and spiritual contemplation. But what are its health advantages? Not only does Yoga focus on improving strength and flexibility, which are key components in having a healthy body, but it has also shown to be helpful for mental well-being.
Yoga in the short term changes the water concentration of some muscle groups though stretching, which allows fore parts of the body to have a larger range of motion and thus makes them more flexible. Over time, this stretching actually creates more cell groups in the body and improves the pain tolerance a person starts out with.
Yoga has also been shown to be an incredibly impactful therapeutic tool, as studies show that it has actually helped heal certain muscle disorders in groups of people once they start incorporating Yoga into their daily routine.
One great example of the benefits of Yoga is the power Yoga has towards the lungs. Breathing exercises in Yoga improves oxygen diffusion and therefore increases blood concentration which helps the heart. It also improves blood pressure and risk of having heart diseases with age.
Evidence suggests that yoga can help reduce symptoms of stress on a person, as well as relaxing one’s mind thus helping their overall mental wellbeing. The experiences someone goes through during Yoga have shown to be transformative towards individuals, and thus helps people enhance life meaning and purpose.