How Yoga Helps Combat Stress

Every day millions of people suffer from stress. Be it difficult situations at work, complex relational problems or simply having a rough day that melts into another; stress is everywhere around us. Finding ways to de-stress that aren’t bad for your body is an important endeavor if you’re to keep stress at bay.

When you experience stress, your body triggers the excessive release of the hormone Cortisol. Under typical stressful circumstances, this hormone would help you deal with things like injuries sustained during an emergency. But when that isn’t the case, high Cortisol levels affect your body negatively.

Yoga is an ancient form of mind-body exercise originating from ancient times. The name Yoga comes from the term yoke. This symbolism is reflective of what the exercise regimen is intended to do, which is holistically bring together various body senses. When practicing it, you stretch in several different ways as you control your breathing. The mixture of the activities has a combined effect of exercising the body’s muscles in a variety of means and slowing down your body to relax you.

Three general areas that Yoga touches on are meditation, posing and breathing exercises.

A) Meditation zeros in on an intentional focus on your mind and its thoughts while in a calm, peaceful state. Being able to slow down the world around you helps you zero in on what is on your mind. The result is a calming effect that helps you relax more.

B) Posing involves moving your body in different ways, at various speeds, and in various positions. The mixture of moving fast then slow then medium speed and on and on has an overall relaxing effect. Your body gets to be exercised releasing any pent up tension due to stress.

C) Breathing exercises control the rate of inflow of air in and out of your body. You get to combine deep and shallow breathing techniques to still your body. Your mind slows down. As a result, any stress you might have reduces.

You can practice Yoga in various places from your living room all the way to a class depending on your preference.

Some effects of Yoga on the body can include:Low Cortisol levels.Low blood pressure levels.Improved emotional well-being.Increased mindfulness.

Conclusion

Stress has become a prominent part of modern day living. Prolonged periods of stress lead to health problems and lack of peace of mind. Through combining different poses, breathing techniques and meditation, Yoga helps center you to release pent up stress and tension. It also has some physical, mental and emotional benefits that combine to improve one’s well-being.

Further reading can be found at: http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/yoga/art-20044733