Yoga can sometimes come across as a bit ‘out there’ – with bright lycra, a deep need to own your own yoga mat, and some incense thrown in for good measure. You don’t need to be a yoga warrior to take part in yoga or gain the benefits though!
The benefits of yoga, especially to stressed, desk bound professionals, can be profound. Not only from a physical self-care point of view, but also from a stress reduction and life extension perspective.
Here’s our top 6 benefits of doing regular yoga
1/ Increase strength, flexibility, and agility: yoga can be pretty intense, not only reaching and stretching your deep tissues, but also activating and utilising your muscles for better strength and tone. It’s amazing for your physical health whether you sit at a desk all day and hardly move, a gym addict, or tri-athlete
2/ Better blood pressure & heart health: yoga has been shown to positively impact blood pressure, specifically affecting the hyporeactors. For those suffering with hypertension, yoga is a fantastic choice that delivers real benefits. It’s also shown to reduce the risk of heart disease!
3/ Reduces stress hormones: yoga is an amazing stress buster, for both your body, and mind. It reduces cortisol (one of your main stress hormones), introduces a focus on deep breathing and breathing techniques, lowers your heart rate, increases your resilience, and enhances your ability to respond to stress
4/ Improves cognitive function, concentration, and memory: yoga has been shown to increase memory capacity, enhance cognitive function, make folks better at learning, while retaining higher levels of concentration. Pretty cool
5/ Increases happiness: yoga is proven to improve mood, lower hostility towards others, reduce anxiety, reduce depression, increase motivation, and deliver an overall sense of wellbeing
6/ Live longer and younger: while the list of blood test markers that are positively impacted by doing yoga is too long to list here, the combined benefit of the factors above seem to translate directly into better health and a longer life.
To put it another way, if yoga was a vitamin, everyone would be taking it!
To your lean, healthy, optimised future,
Matt, Dee & the Optimised yoga team