Everyone comes to yoga for various reasons, some for perfect figures, some for health, some for mental peace…I started my yoga journey last year, and my reason was just as simple as to force myself to exercise and keep healthy.
When it comes to Yoga, most people simply consider it as an exercise as I did. However, that’s our misconception. Yoga is more than that. It is a system that integrates the body, the mind, and spirit with the self, which means that yoga is the connection of the mind and the body in complete harmony that brings about a sense of equanimity, happiness, and fulfillment. As B.K.S Lyengar said “ Yoga is like music. The rhythm of the body, the melody of the mind, and the harmony of the soul create the symphony of life. ”
It’s commonly known that Yoga poses bring physical health. It helps stretch and strengthen muscles to improve flexibility and strength. Poses like Uttanasana stretches out hamstrings, calves, and lower back, which is an excellent way to deal with chronic back pain, to strengthen hamstrings, and to make you more flexible. Bhujangasana, named as cobra pose, engages the lower back, shoulders, and chest. Those who suffer from spine injuries, back problems, or lower back pain should practice this asana to deal with lower back stiffness and relieve spinal pain. Downward facing dog and plank pose build upper-body strength. The standing poses build strength in your hamstrings, quadriceps, and abs. The benefits of yoga poses are too numerous to be listed down here.
Pranayama is also an important part of yoga and usually practiced together with asanas and meditation. It’s a breathing technique that teaches us how to control our breath like breath duration, frequency and hold in the practice in order to strengthen the connection between our body and mind. Pranayama can promote relaxation and mindfulness and also provides healing physical benefits, such as reducing high blood pressure, improving lung function, and enhancing cognitive performance.
Have you ever thought that yoga also can help achieve self-realization? Self-realization is the experience of oneness with the truth. Yoga practice is one way to reach self-realization. It integrates your body, mind, and spirit and through the integration anyone, anywhere can realize their truth and full potential. Once reaching this state, you are free from all personal desires, fears, anxieties, worldly attachments, and external pressures, and you can get inner peace, permanent happiness, and spiritual fulfillment.
Does it sound perfect to practice yoga? Inner peace and spiritual fulfillment are like what we pursue in our whole life and yoga practice can help you to reach it. Of course, it takes time. As you get deeper into your practice over the years, you can see the mental and spiritual benefits. Let’s hang on there together.