Yoga: too good to be true?

by Prema , Aug 28, 2021

Yoga: too good to be true?


Relief from stress, anxiety, back pain, neck pain, improves flexibility and strength, improves concentration, seems like everyone should take up this hobby!

How many times has someone recommended a yoga class? When you’ve got too much on your plate and are feeling stressed. When those old anxieties have crept back up on you, your closest friends and loved ones notice and want to help. Or you’ve busted your back and the doc recommends “Try out yoga.” Seems like it’s the cure for everything, too good to be true! What do people even do in a yoga class, lie down, breathe, roll their shoulders and some saluting of the sun? 

Just what is it about these simple exercise routines that are so popular that there are over 20 yoga studios in Wellington centre, not even including the suburbs? 

Yoga can be as diverse as you want it, there are options for everybody, beginners to the most advanced. A well-structured yoga class contains a completely balanced routine including: 

1. Stretches to improve flexibility, getting not just the surface muscles but the deep and intricate ones as well, the length of the postures gives enough time for not only the muscle to relax but the surrounding fascia and connective tissue to also loosen, allowing for deep rejuvenation and tissue repair

2. Strength, but not in an exhaustive style that leaves you sore for days, recovering. The holistic yoga strength postures use your body weight as the resistance so that while working out you aren’t able to damage your muscle fibres or deplete stored nutrients. This means that as you regularly practice the postures you aren’t left depleted and sore and you do notice the improvement gradually.

Ok so that’s the physical stuff, but how does that help with my mind and its vexations? 


Well yes the flexibility and strength postures in and of themselves are beneficial to the body, but the whole routine, done regularly is what really provides stability and relief for the mind. The regular breathing patterns whilst moving through the postures and flowing routines bring a steadiness to the mind that is very difficult to come across elsewhere. As celebrity Miley Cyrus says, “Gotta do yoga not for my body but for my mind! DO YOGA or GO CRAZY!” Following the routine and sticking to it also gives the practitioner the mental vigor of determination as you continue to hold those challenging poses, which sticks with the yogi and helps in life off the mat.