I have to admit that when I didn’t practice yoga I thought of it as some easy, stretch here, stretch there, lie with your eyes closed and breath in breath out sort of thing. I didn’t want to try it because I thought I didn’t have time for something that wasn’t going to help towards getting me a hot ass and 6 pack abs – and that’s were happiness lies right? Well of course, I was totally wrong. Not only about the happiness lying in the 6 pack (you can check out more of that in the mindset section of the blog) but about my whole idea of yoga.
So how did I end up loving it? Well, my friend convinced me to go because she wanted to try it but didn’t want to go on her own. I’d been to the gym that day and as I’m awful at stretching after my workouts I thought ‘oh go on then, it will do me good to have a nice stretch’. Don’t get me wrong, a good stretch is what I got but WOWZERS!! It was so much more than that! It was truly invigorating! I actually couldn’t believe how awake and energized I felt on leaving, and how much I really wanted to go home and practice what I had learnt! The next day I woke up feeling calmer yet more alive. There are so many incredible reasons to practice yoga and I think it’s something that everyone should try. But here are just a few of the benefits you can get from some glorious time spent on the mat.
Yoga is amazing at building strength! Having to hold things like planks, lunges, arm balances and headstands really works your muscles and gets you to engage them. Honestly, I worked up such a sweat in my first class from constantly holding myself in different positions that the teacher kept telling me to breathe!!
The stretches and movements in yoga are fantastic if you want to loosen up your muscles and get move flexible. A lot of the poses really open you up and the breathing techniques help you reach and stretch that little bit further. I’ve already noticed the changes from when I first started, I can totally put my hands on the floor and keep my legs straight now, thank you ‘forward fold’.
My balance is terrible!! I wobble and fall all over the place like some kind of rag doll, but thanks to yoga this is getting better!! It teaches you focus and builds the strength in your core and other muscles so you can balance a lot easier and with more control.
Relaxation and Stress management
Along with being a kick ass workout and marvellous stretching session one of the major reasons I love yoga is because it really helps you relax and de-stress. The breathing combined with the movements gives you a real sense of peace and calm. I love the time at the end of most classes that is dedicated to relaxation and unwinding. Yoga allows you to let go of the days worries and stresses, it gives you space to stop, breathe and connect your body and mind. It leaves you feeling relaxed, calm and at peace with your body and the world.
I really hope this encourages you to get a bit of yoga in your life and give it a try. It’s so good for your body, mind and soul.
Have a positive, energised day,
Hugs Sam xx