World Yoga Day: Benefits of Yoga and Meditation

What is yoga?

It simply a form of exercise, and like most exercises yoga helps you balance yourself. Yoga also helps us find balance, peace and a unique sort of harmony with the world.

Yoga is a style of exercise which is enjoyed by people who are aiming to have a peaceful and happy life. It is a way to align the mind and body to gain a peace, happy perception and positive outlook towards our life that will lead to healthy lifestyle and spiritual growth.

The main motive of yoga exercise is to let a person appreciate their body. Yoga lets the person harmonize their mind and body, making it so that the person is always healthy from both body and mind.

Yoga also gives you the excuse to spend time for yourself, to disconnect from the world and be one with every fiber of your being and get acquainted with yourself more.

Many people confuse yoga with meditation as being the same thing. However the fact is that both are related, one is the sub-branch(meditation) while the other the main house ( yoga).

What is the difference between Yoga and Meditation?

Yoga is ‘Chitta Vriti Nirodhah’ a form of exercise used to promote the union of the body and the mind to promotes physical, spiritual and mental wellness. Yoga is considered a way of life that provides numerous benefits and it is divided into eight different steps:
• Yama
• Niyama
• Aasana
• Prnayama
• Pratyahar
• Dhyana and
• Samridhi

Meditation also referred to as Dhyana is one of the several steps of yoga that mainly focuses on mental relaxation and concentration of ones thoughts through the means of patterned breathing and concentrating into nothingness. While these are health and mental benefits, having control on the breathing and train of thoughts definitely comes in handy in difficult situations in our daily lives.

Health benefits of Yoga and Meditation

Releases stress:

Yoga is the rage now-a-days, everybody does yoga, even the prime minister! But why wouldn’t they? They too are humans, but unlike normal citizens, they are people with excess work pressure. Yoga is an excellent way to refresh your mind and body as it focuses on the breathing and muscle relaxation compared to heavy exercise that are energy consuming.

Helps to fight diseases:

Yoga is more effective compared to exercise or relaxation in many aspects of body wellness and mental health. The following are some of the gained benefits of yoga and meditation:

1. Problems of blood pressure become controlled.
2. Bronchial asthma may not completely come under control but the chances of sudden attack decreases.
3. Chronic lower back pain relief.
4. Helps in preventing  life-threatening diseases as yoga circulates the energy in, 7 chakras that help cleanse our body and improve life force.

Decreases depression:

Meditation or Dhyana helps decrease depression, meditation in yoga focuses the mind on emptiness, this emptiness helps clear the mind which decreases ruminative thinking and dysfunctional beliefs. Study shows that depression, anxiety and stress can be reduce through meditation. This is especially good for mothers to be as during pregnancy hormones go haywire sometimes throwing them into depression.

Helps to stay calm every time:

It also regulates mood and anxiety disorders, some common techniques for meditation is to sit crossed legs with back straight and hands stretched on your knees and the thumb pressing on any of the pressure point on other four fingers.
The eyes must be closed and a rhythmic pattern of breathing should take place. In this, the concentration will first be on the breathing until the mind stabilizes, only then is the mind able to focus into nothingness. While the process may seem easy, to clear the mind and stabilize it, it may take a very long time to do it correctly.

Other benefits of Yoga and Meditation:

The clarity of mind that is focused upon in yoga helps with many other problems too
1. Reduces stress and anxiety in general.
2. Reduces the symptoms of panic disorder.
3. Improves the concentration level.
4. Meditation increase the grey matter concentration in areas of the brain involved in regulating emotions.
5. Enhance learning, memory and sense of self.
6. Improve your performance and ability to work under stress.
7. It helps to control in emotions.

I believe all the above benefits of yoga and meditation will motivate you on this ‘Yoga Day’. Hope you will also try to give some of your valuable time for health and fitness.

(IMAGE COURTESY: FACEBOOK/NARENDRA MODI)

(The writer is the Director and CEO at Kirola Sports Pvt Ltd. She has played Basketball, Taekwondo and High Jump at National level)

( The views expressed are the author’s own.The POST neither endorses nor is responsible for them.)

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