The fitness benefits of yoga go much further than improving your flexibility and balance. Since its introduction more than 5000 years ago, more than a dozen styles have been developed, making yoga a very effective tool for improving fitness levels and treating medical conditions.
While other exercise fads come and go, yoga has remained one of the most popular practices because it offers something for everyone regardless of your age or current fitness level.
While some styles of Yoga are more physically rigorous than others, every type will help improve muscle tone and strength to some degree. Yoga was also designed to open and stretch out all of the joints of the body.
Yoga Fitness Benefits
Body Strength. Many yoga movements are bodyweight poses that require using multiple muscle groups to lift your body and maintain balance. Practicing yoga on a regular basis will build strength and tone some of the popular trouble areas like the inner thighs, midsection and back of the arms.
Endurance. Although the more athletic styles of Yoga such as Ashtanga, Power, or Bikram will provide a more rigorous workout, all types will improve your fitness, endurance, and balance since you are maintaining poses and supporting your own body weight for extended periods of time. Breathing exercises will also increase your lung capacity which will help with performance and endurance while playing sports or engaging in other aerobic activities.
Balance & Flexibility. What sets yoga balancing poses apart from the others is the level of focus and concentration they require. All yoga postures require body awareness, but balancing poses demand full concentration and stillness.
Almost all yoga poses require flexibility so you should notice improvements regardless of which postures you choose; however, there are particular Asanas that focus specifically on stretching and target problem areas such as the hips, back, shoulders and hamstrings.
Improve Immunity. Yoga poses can massage the organs, help drain the adrenal glands, and boost antioxidant levels within the body. Combine these benefits with a reduction in stress levels and the result will be a stronger immune system and an improved ability to heal from injuries or recover from illness.
Bone Strength. many people have found that certain styles of yoga are effective at relieving the pain caused by arthritis, osteoporosis, and other age-related conditions.
Posture. Incorrect posture can cause back and neck pain that may eventually lead to more serious problems. Since many of the Yoga poses like back bending routines build core strength and stretch tight muscles, you will find that you are sitting straighter, standing taller, and waking less stiff in the mornings.
Fitness Benefits of Yoga
Fitness fads come and go, but there isn't any other plan that has lasted as long as yoga. Yogi's have been practicing yoga for more than 5,000 years. yoga is good for the beginner, people of all ages and any fitness level.
I will continue to share ideas about diet and exercise that have helped me along the way. If you have any questions I can help you with, or if you have any ideas you want to share, feel free to contact me or visit our Q&A forum.
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