Yoga - this is a very broad term covering a variety of mental and physical practice. She appeared more than 5,000 years ago; today, it takes hundreds of millions of people worldwide. One of the central tasks of yoga - to achieve mental and physical balance, relaxation, control stress
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. Traditional yoga philosophy requires that a person not only to perform certain exercises and regular meditation, nutrition and behavior. People living in Western countries usually do not produce radical changes in their way of life when they begin to practice yoga - they follow only the most suitable for their practices, but it brings great benefit to the health, both physical and mental.
Although most healthy people, yoga is safe, we should not forget about the possible risks. According to experts, among the people practicing yoga, the most common variety of damage to the neck, shoulders, spine, knee joint. Most often it is just stretching, but there are more serious injuries.
The risk of damage during yoga increases under the following conditions:
- Severe forms of osteoporosis;
- High or low blood pressure;
- Problems with the spine;
- Pregnancy (there is a risk for both the mother and fetus).
The following tips can help make your yoga safer:
- If you are pregnant or if you have any chronic condition, consult your doctor before doing yoga;
- Engage with an instructor. Self-taught in yoga can have undesirable consequences;
- Yoga is no substitute for medical treatment. It is very useful and can be used as an additional means of treatment, but if you have a serious disease, we must first go to the doctor and not to alternative practices;
- Know your limits and do not demand too much from yourself. Before you start doing yoga, talk to the instructor to find out what level of physical preparation it requires, and which direction is right for you;
- Learn without rushing. Yoga - is in any case not a competition. Start with the basics and do not move further until you have mastered them;
- Warms up before each class;
- Ask questions. If you do not understand something in the exercise, immediately seek the assistance of the instructor;
- Listen to your body. Yoga should not hurt; if you're sick - stay. If the pain does not pass in a day, contact your doctor. If you feel pain in your chest
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, Dizziness, lightheadedness, stop exercising immediately and call an ambulance if these feelings do not go through a few minutes.
Perhaps of all the properties of the body yoga is most strongly associated with flexibility. That is why many people do not begin to deal with it, for fear that they are too old or simply not flexible enough for yoga. In fact, never too late to make your body more flexible.
Many yoga postures, or asanas, are aimed at a safe stretching muscles. During the lessons secreted lactic acid
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Which usually stagnates in the muscles, causing them to stiffness, tension, pain, as well as contributing to rapid fatigue during exercise. Moreover, yoga increases the range of joint mobility and improves lubrication. The result is a feeling of lightness and flexibility throughout the body.
During a yoga stretch not only the muscles but also all the soft tissues of the body, including the ligaments, tendons, muscles and fascial sheath. Results of training will become apparent very soon. One study showed that all eight weeks of yoga increases flexibility, on average, by 35%.
Some styles of yoga, such as ashtanga and power yoga, enhance muscle tone. But other styles that are more focused on certain positions than on the move, helping to develop muscular strength and endurance. Regular practice of yoga can help a person stay physically (and internally) strong, regardless of age.
Since yoga requires a deep, thoughtful breath (that is - you need to think about how you breathe), it contributes to an increase in lung volume. This helps not only to improve their athletic performance, but also to better control their emotions in everyday life.
Less stress, more peace of mind
Even after the first yoga classes, many people feel more relaxed. Some yoga styles use specific meditation techniques to stop the constant "inner chatter". Occasionally deep breathing is applied in combination with a focus only on the breath. When this happens, the mind calms down and is involved not only psychological but biochemical processes. For example, people who practice these styles of yoga, there is a decrease the level of catecholamines, hormones that the pancreas produces in response to stress. Also, there is a decrease levels of dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine. Some studies have shown increasing levels of oxytocin during yoga - a hormone that is associated with a sense of tranquility, confidence, and internal communication with other people.
Concentration and mood
It is difficult to prove and justify from a scientific point of view, however, improve concentration - this is another feature of yoga, which they say almost everyone who deals with it on a regular basis. The same applies to the mood - many people say that thanks to yoga, they began to feel happier and more peaceful. Recently began studies of the effect of yoga on people suffering from depression. Scientists suggest that improving the supply of oxygen to the brain during a yoga practice can help improve the condition of patients. Furthermore, yoga regarded as an additional therapeutic agent to alleviate the symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder.
We know that Yoga lowers blood pressure and reduces heart rate, thus exerting a beneficial effect on people with hypertension, heart disease and an increased risk of stroke. Yoga reduces the level of triglycerides, which are also very good for the heart.
In some medical centers yoga, in combination with other therapies used in clinical depression and heart disease, it alleviates the symptoms of asthma and arthritis. Perhaps in the near future will yoga used in the treatment of insomnia, and multiple sclerosis.
Other beneficial properties of yoga
Many scientists believe that yoga has a positive effect on learning and memory. It can also slow down the aging process and, more importantly, help the person to accept themselves as they are, regardless of age and age.
Other beneficial properties of yoga are more difficult to study. For example, it is believed that yoga enhances spirituality and promotes the appearance of a person a sense of community and unity with the world - not only with people, but with all its components. Some of those involved with yoga, even claim that it contributes to the improvement of relations in marriage and at work. These statements can be viewed as anything but the best way to find out what really gives yoga - to do it, and draw their own conclusions.