If you have been to a gym in the past 5 years, you have probably noticed the increased attendance of yoga classes or at least the increase of class offerings on the group fitness schedule. Maybe you are even in on the craze. If you have ever walked by a class and thought “that’s not for me” or even “that’s a girly class,” we are here to open your eyes.
Here are our top 3 reasons why yoga is beneficial for both women and men:
Guys, we will start with you first:
- Flexibility gained through yoga makes you a better athlete. The most obvious reason athletes value their flexibility is because a larger range of motion helps prevent injury. Yoga focuses on correct form. Practicing correct form in yoga poses will carry over to when you’re actually in motion. Isometric holds for an elongated time will help your muscles focus on instead of fight against movement.
- Yoga makes you smell better. The controlled breathing and sweating in yoga classes get rid of toxins in your body. It also improves your circulation and regulates your digestion which also leads to toxins leaving your body. Bikram Yoga, more commonly known as Hot Yoga, is the best option for getting rid of the most toxins in one class. By getting rid of bodily toxins, your natural scent (and even your sweat) will smell sweeter.
- Yoga helps get rid of pain. Maybe you’ve had a hard week of workouts and your body needs to rest and recover. Yoga is a great option on a recovery day. It can help you recover faster and more effectively, which leads to a more efficient workout. Perhaps you have chronic pain in your back or another part of your body. There is a yoga pose to relax and restore every muscle group in your body. By alerting your instructor of which muscles hurt, they can put together a sequence to ease the pain in that area. Yoga has even been known to get rid of sore throats.
Ladies, here are 3 reasons for you:
- Better breathing. There is a unique rhythm to yoga classes. Slow, deep breaths are required to move through the poses gracefully. These slow breaths not only lead to relaxation, but also improve lung function. Practicing proper breathing will train the diaphragm, strengthen the heart and lungs, and reduce lactic acid build up. One of the reasons a yoga class leaves you feeling energized is because of the increased oxygen intake.
- Sculpt your muscles. The name of the game with yoga is muscle stabilization. Holding poses with a narrow base of support forces muscles to do what they are meant to - hold your body up. Yoga teaches your body to draw strength and control from your core. Each pose will reinforce muscles around your spine. A strong core can improve posture, reduce lower back, neck and shoulder pain, and give you a leaner, longer looking torso.
- Inner Peace. Meditation is a main aspect of yoga. In your fast-paced world where it seems everyone demands your attention, taking time for you is essential. The quiet, calming environment a yoga classes offers allows for your mind to quiet. As your mind quiets, you will find it has time to rest. After class, you can experience better concentration, memory, and ability to live in the present moment.
Whether you are looking for improved strength and flexibility or you want to bring some peace and quiet into your life, yoga is a good place to start. In time, a dedicated practitioner of yoga will experience positive life changes in their overall health and wellness.