Okay, you’ve thought about doing yoga or perhaps you are already practicing and want to learn the benefits of a regular practice. The primary benefit of practicing yoga is Self-realization: a stilling of the mind’s disturbances so you experience life at its deepest and most profound level. But — and it’s a huge but — there are also many other extremely beneficial side-effects!
According to a recent (’04) study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, physical inactivity and poor diet are just about to overtake smoking as the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. (For more on yoga and diet, see the article “Yoga and Nutrition” in our Inspiration section.)
A regular hatha yoga practice can go a long way to address the following issues:
- Prevent some forms of diabetes: All forms of exercise including yoga help to stabilize blood glucose levels which are an important factor in the prevention or minimization of diabetes.
- Prevent arthritis: One of the best preventions or relievers of arthritis is motion and exercise. Using all the muscle groups in a typical yoga practice strengthens bone and improves coordination and balance. The low-impact form of exercise present in yoga postures can improve endurance, muscle strength and joint flexibility as well as range of motion.
- Relieve and heal backaches: Unlike pain medication or heating pads, yoga goes right to the core physical cause of a backache helping you to recognize areas of chronic tension and trace them to their physical/emotional roots in order to let the pain go. Overall fitness and muscle tone is essential to your spine’s health. The more aerobic forms of yoga feed your spine with vital oxygen (the spine gets almost all of its nutrients from your breath) and helps to create flexible hamstrings and hip flexors which can free-up the lower back.
- Improve mental health: A huge part of any yoga practice is calming the mind’s ability to disturb yourself and others. A regular yoga practice can reduce or eliminate the root of anxiety disorders and depression and lead to a more peaceful state conducive to confidence, grace and calm efficiency in pressured situations.
- Prevent or heal from heart disease: A regular yoga practice can reduce blood pressure, and lower cholesterol and body fat, all major factors contributing to cardiovascular disease.
- Prevent the bone loss of osteoporosis: The low impact nature of Yoga postures can be especially effective for post-menopausal women and older men in building and preserving bone density.
All of these side-effects make it possible fo us to live more in harmony with our bodies and minds so that they may assist us in connecting with our true nature of peace and fulfillment. We invite you to come practice with us and experience for yourself the joyful benefits that come from the direct experience of yoga.
Sources: the American Heart Association, Andrew Feldman M.D. (The Jock Docs body Repair Kit), National Institute of Aging, FIT Smart USA Weekend.
I’m new to Yoga. What should I expect?
Nothing like you’ve ever experienced before. Ideally, Yoga teaches us to let go of expectations so we can experience life as it is in this moment.
To read an essay on experiencing a yoga class for the first time and to get an idea of what yoga can do in your life, select an article below…
There are some general guidelines that lead to a great yoga class experience. It is the intention of Inner Vision Yoga to provide you with:
- An experienced, knowledgeable teacher who loves what they’re doing.
- Help in picking a class that is right for you.
- Guidance on how you can adjust poses for the way your body is.
- Enthusiastic, non-dogmatic encouragement.
- A teacher who is compassionate and accepting of you as you are.
- The ability to rest or leave class anytime you want.
- World/Sacred/Pop Music in some classes, other classes offered without music.
- The ability to shower or change clothing if you want before or after class.
- A relaxed atmosphere of inclusion, not exclusion.
- Suggestions for another teacher or yoga studio if Inner Vision Yoga doesn’t work for you.
What do I Need to Bring for Yoga Class?
Coming in before or after work? Inner VisionYoga has changing rooms and showers available. As for the class itself, here’s what to bring…
- Comfortable, non-restrictive workout clothing
- A water bottle and towel for heated classes (water is also available on premises)
- A yoga Mat (yoga mats may also be purchased or rented at Inner Vision Yoga)
- A change of clothing if you’d like to shower before or after class (Soap/shampoo is provided)
Towel and Mat rentals are available for $3. Props such as blocks, blankets and belts will be available in-class if needed.
Perhaps the most important thing to bring is yourself — to just show up and give yourself the gift of time spent strengthening and cleansing the body/mind while connecting with your entire being.