Yoga and Its Benefits
What is Yoga?
Yoga is a discipline originally conceived to bring the restless mind to a place of peace. Yoga is an ancient philosophy of life as well as a system of exercises that encourages the union of the mind, body, and spirit. In fact, the word yoga is derived from the Sanskrit word meaning yoke or union. The ultimate goal of yoga is to achieve a state of balance and harmony between the mind and body promoting physical, spiritual health, and vitality.
What is Hatha Yoga?
Hatha Yoga concentrates on three areas: pranayama (breathing), asanas (poses), and dyana (meditation).
Yoga Benefits vs. Exercise Benefits
- Parasympathetic Nervous System dominates
- Subcortical regions of brain dominate
- Slow dynamic and static movements
- Normalization of muscle tone
- Low risk of injuring muscles and ligaments
- Low caloric consumption
- Effort is minimized, relaxed
- Energizing (breathing is natural or controlled)
- Balanced activity of opposing muscle groups
- Noncompetitive, process-oriented
- Awareness is internal (focus is on breath and the infinite)
- Limitless possibilities for growth in self-awareness