By: Jennifer Chiongson Reyes

Our body is connected to our mind. Our brain affects our health. Stress and conflict shock impact our being.

Doing physical exercise improves health but a true health warrior understands that it requires harmony of the physical and psychological functions to be perfectly fit. That makes yoga the best form of exercise.

Physical benefits 

  1. Flexibility – Yoga works on stretching your muscles. This lessens the pain in our shoulders, back, hips and hamstrings and eventually improves our mobility.
  2. Strength and Balance – There are yoga poses that can build strength and balance. The standing poses that require you to support your body weight is for strength. The one leg stand or the poses where you are supporting yourself with your arm develop balance. If done over the course of several breaths, it can build core strength.
  3. Body Pain – Simply resting in bed will or even over the counter medicine can only provide temporary relief for body pains. Yoga can address the root of this problem. Strengthening and stretching yoga exercises align your muscles and can help resolve the tightness and spinal compression.
  4. Breathing – Breathing calms the central nervous system. Yoga has a breathing exercise that teach us how to take deep breaths that can make you relax and is good for your heart.
  5. Better posture – When you do yoga, you become more aware of your body posture. You quickly adjust when you feel like you are slouching or slumping because you are getting used with the correct body posture that the activity requires you to have on your regular exercise.

 Mental Benefits

  1. Stress – Yoga promotes relaxation thus reduces stress. They say, there is an emotional healing on the mat. When you stand or sit into it, you are connecting to the deeper dimension of your being. You are letting your mind come down to your heart. You are giving yourself a break from your stress.
  2. Mental Calmness – Yoga has meditation techniques. The skill could help those who are suffering from anxiety or insomnia. It sharpens attention and concentration.
  3. Self- confidence – When you are into yoga, you became fully aware of your body. You learn to subtly do things that improve and align your well-being and this can boost self-confidence.
  4. Depression – Yoga is able to decrease stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol affect the serotonin, the neurotransmitter often associated with depression.

The root cause of our sickness or ailment is our failure to balance both our physical and mental fitness. We can prevent and even cure our illness and improve our well-being if we commit to take care of not only our physical health but as well as our mental condition. We can do the holistic alternative approach to heal and be healthy.

Like any exercise, there will be pain and soreness in the first few sessions if you do yoga exercise. This is a natural process of muscle recovery trying to repair and rebuild. The soreness will be gone in two or three days’ time. Just do not overdo the process in just one day and stay active every day.

My prescription for a healthy body and soul, meditation. Practice yoga.

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