In this Yoga for Beginners series, we’ve talked about a few benefits of yoga and why yoga is for everyone. We’ll cover more in the weeks to come as this is something that I really want to continue with. Today, we’ll talk about 5 benefits of yoga for mental health. I could very well call this meditation for mental health, but because it’s in the Yoga for Beginners series, it will be more about yoga while incorporating meditation.
Aside from the many health benefits of Yoga; the poses, meditation, deep-breathing and stretching can also help your mental well-being. Increased body awareness, relief of chronic stress and relaxation are just a few of the benefits you’ll experience when you begin the practice of Yoga.
5 Benefits of Yoga for Mental Health include:
* Sharper Concentration – Concentration is one of the essential elements to achieving success. Yoga scientifically creates harmony between the mind and body and helps everything you come into sharper focus.
The Salutation Seal is one of the easiest Yoga poses and involves sitting cross-legged on the floor, joining the palms of your hands, keeping the spine straight and taking deep breaths as you rid your mind of worries.
* Relieves Stress – Yoga is highly recognized by mental professionals as a way to relieve stress and its by-products – such as depression and anxiety. It works by relieving symptoms that are related to these disorders – bringing a sense of well-being.
Yoga activates the natural relaxation response of the body rather than relaxation by watching television. Any of the Yoga deep breathing, meditation or rhythmic exercises can help to relieve the stress we all face in today’s world.
* Relieves Muscle Strain – When your muscles are relaxed, your mind can also relax. The gentle stretching exercises of Yoga can switch your mind to concentrating on pain and anxiety to a more normal, relaxed state of the mind.
The Kneeling Lunge Twist and the Revolved Triangle poses will help to relieve muscle strain while increasing circulation to the brain. As your muscles relax, so will your mind.
* Center Your Attention – Yoga is recommended by medical professionals to help those with attention deficit disorders. These disorders can handicap children and adults by causing them to be inattentive and to react impulsively.
This is in addition to the benefits from the self-control and self-awareness Yoga exercises such as breathing techniques and any that specifically promote rest and relaxation.
* Free the Spirit – An internal mental attitude locked in stress and tension can’t be free to explore life. Tuning in to our breathing and becoming focused on our bodies and minds are the true elements of Yoga.
Meditation is the act of being at one with ourselves – no distractions, remembering or thinking. The ego will gradually fade away and you can better free yourself from the bad habits and behavior that is holding you back from experiencing all that life has to offer.
Yoga is often misunderstood as mysterious and only for ‘weirdoes’ who have time to meditate for hours and experience levitation. But, Western scientists and medical professionals are beginning to discover that Yoga can help to relieve modern-day symptoms of stress and mental anxiety and anguish.
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