Living a healthy life, or at least being as healthy as we can be, should be a goal for every single one of us.

And practising yoga simply complements a healthy lifestyle. It’s only yogical! (See what I did there?)

Throughout history, yoga has been practised and nurtured as a way of relaxation, rejuvenation and recreation. I can tell you right away that those “myths” about the benefits of yoga and the spirit of it, are true.

This is of incredible importance to us because of the way our body connects with our mind. In order to live a happy and healthy life, we need to put all pieces of the puzzle together.

What I mean by this, is that our mind and body must work together! It’s common to feel stressed, lethargic, or even ill when the body and mind aren’t aligned. Yoga can help to forge and strengthen this mind-body connection, whilst nurturing your body and feeding your soul. 

Did you know that the Indus-Sarasvati civilisation developed yoga 5000 years ago?

I was blown away by that fact, and here is another:

The word – yoga – was found in the sacred scripts called “The Rig Veda”. Vedas were collections of rituals, songs and other similar cult mantras. As you can see, yoga isn’t just some popular technique developed by a guy from a gym. It has a huge, complex and ancient background.

How Can Yoga Benefit Your Body and Soul?

Yoga can connect these two important areas and benefit them both. From depression to arthritis and muscle tension, it can help ease the symptoms of them all. It’s proven that yoga can be used as a depression treatment: “Yoga for Arthritis: A complete guide book”, written by Ellen Saltonstall and Loren Fishman, shows how it can have physical benefits as well as mental ones.

Yoga can help you with:

  • Finding inner peace – Through meditation and breathing techniques, yoga will help you shape your thoughts and control them. It all starts from the mind: if you master your thoughts, you can become a master of your life.
  • Stress relief – The same meditation and breathing techniques can also help you to manage stress. Stress is a prevalent trigger for many people getting sick in the modern world. To some, it is a necessary part of everyday life, and feeling stressed can also become a habit. Yoga can help to keep stress under control.
  • Muscle tension – Yoga poses and sequences can help you with your flexibility and ease muscle tension. It can help with various pains like back pain, joint pain and arthritis muscle pain as well. Some of the moves are harder to learn than others, however, with patience and practise, you can make it happen.
  • Increased energy levels –Yoga is a natural way of increasing your energy levels and being active throughout the day. Try to avoid energy drinks that only make your body sicker over time. 
  • Correct posture – When performed correctly, yoga sequences and poses can benefit your posture and correct your alignment.

In order to get everything from that list and more, you should practise yoga regularly. Of course, this doesn’t mean that it has to take up your entire day, it just means that you have to commit to yourself and your practice.

Try to practise yoga daily.

Whether it’s a ten minute stretch, a 15 minute meditation or an hour long class, incorporating yoga practices and principles into your day can help you live a happier, more relaxed and healthier life.

You can take a class, which is recommended as you have a professional instructor to help with form and give alignment tips, or you can practise at home. There are tons of DVDs that you can buy — or just watch how it’s done on Youtube.

Whatever you choose though, try to make yoga a habit, as the benefits are remarkable. This is the first step of implementing yoga into your life and making it a lifestyle. To make the most of yoga:

  • Eat a varied, healthy diet

We are what we eat and there are even diets made especially for yoga. If you practise every day and put wholesome fuel into your body, your whole system will say “Thanks” in a way you haven’t experienced before. Positive vibes will come flowing through you, you will attract better people, it will be easier for you to get into that zen mode. 

  • Practise just breathing

It sounds simple, but breathing can calm you down — if you know how to do it. Yoga will teach you the basic technique of inhaling and exhaling with intention. You can try doing this even when you aren’t practising yoga to reap the benefits in all facets of your life. Whenever negative vibes come to your mind, just remember what you’ve learned.

Yoga is open for anyone and can benefit everyone.

The yoga journey offers a different experience for each and every student. You will find the meaning behind it on your own. Good luck!

Ella is a freelance journalist specialising in beauty, health, fitness and skincare. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.