Yoga, a spiritual and physical discipline that dates back more than 5,000 years, originated in India. Millions still believe Yoga can increase flexibility, strengthen muscles, and reduce stress.

What is Yoga?

Yoga poses focus on particular body parts and breathing techniques to integrate the body and mind.

Yoga is gaining popularity because of its health benefits.

Twenty million Americans are involved in Yoga and other mind/body exercises.

Many people report that Yoga benefits their health and wellness and relieves pain and aches in specific areas, such as back and neck pain.

90% of yoga practitioners feel that their practice is very helpful or somewhat so.

Yoga has many health benefits

Please note: If you are diagnosed with any of these conditions, consult your doctor before starting a yoga or exercise program.

These are some of the ways Yoga can positively impact your body:

Blood pressure. Breathing techniques can reduce stress and increase blood flow. This may lower blood pressure.

Bone disease. Weight-bearing exercise has been proven to be helpful in bone remodeling. This is done in a non-impact way that is less damaging to the joints.

Diabetes. Yoga has been shown to lower blood sugar, promote weight loss, and improve insulin sensitivity in people with diabetes.

Strength. Strength another benefit  is better positioning.

Flexibility. Yoga postures allow you to move more freely without feeling stiff. It increases the lubrication and strength of your joints, ligaments, and tendons.

Mood. Yoga helps decrease anxiety, tension, and fatigue while increasing energy levels and well-being.

Yoga has been shown to have other health benefits, including reduced asthma symptoms, less carpal tunnel syndrome pain, lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, and improved immune system function.

Is Yoga right for you?

Although there are many types of Yoga, they all aim for the same goal: Unity of mind, body, and spirit. These are some of the most well-known styles of Yoga:

Hatha. This Hatha-style yoga class focuses on classical postures and breathing exercises. Great for beginners.

Vinyasa. This style includes faster movements that match the breath. It also provides sun salutations. You can expect to raise your heart rate.

Ashtanga. This form is about strengthening your muscles through more difficult moves each time you do it. Ashtanga uses the same intense poses every time.

Bikram. This form of hot Yoga is heated to between 95 and 100 degrees. It is said to relax the muscles. The 26-pose method is the basis of this class, although some styles may vary the moves.

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