Yoga makes a great addition to almost any training schedule or fitness routine. Here are just a few reasons to consider adding yoga to your fitness routine:
It’s a common assumption that you can only practice yoga if you’re extremely flexible. But even if you can’t touch your toes, yoga has a lot of benefits to offer. One of those benefits is improving flexibility. No matter how flexible (or inflexible) you are when you start, practicing yoga is a great way to improve your range of motion. If you’re looking to try yoga for this benefit, look for lower-intensity classes that are at a slower pace. You’ll move into each pose more slowly and hold it for a longer period of time.
Yoga coordinates breathing to movement. You move into a pose as you inhale and switch to another pose as you exhale. As you work out, you might find that you occasionally hold your breath or your breathing remains shallow, especially at higher intensities. Yoga can help you with your breathwork making oxygen more readily available to your working muscles.
Paying attention to your breathing and movements through yoga leads to greater mindfulness, better concentration, and improved focus. Your world shrinks to the size of your yoga mat when you’re able to shift your awareness to whatever’s happening in the present moment. Which in yoga, is moving and breathing. By becoming more mindful through yoga, you can then take this skill to your workouts, as well as to your daily life. As you add more mindfulness to your day, you’ll experience less stress and anxiety.
If you’re just getting started with yoga, you might find some of the poses to be more challenging than you thought. Even something as simple as standing on one foot can be harder than you imagined. As you experience more of what yoga has to offer, you’ll probably find that one side of your body is tighter than the other. Or you might be able to balance better on your right side compared to your left. By sticking with yoga, you’ll begin to even out some of these balances so there is less of a difference between sides.
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