5 Reasons Why Yoga Is Life-Changing

by MorganQ
5 Reasons Why Yoga Is Life-Changing

Yoga is one of the oldest forms of exercise, and it is still around today. For those who question the benefits of yoga it is easy to dismiss the potential benefits based solely on the fact that the exercise seems inactive. The health benefits of yoga prove that it's a great exercise to fit into your routine. With yoga's potential life-changing possibilities, it's no wonder it has been around for so long.

Improves Happiness

According to a study from the Boston University School of Medicine, doing asana (a form of yoga that includes sitting, standing and balancing poses) for an hour raised ones levels of GABA, a brain chemical often associated with depression when too low, by 27 percent. This was compared to a group of people who read quietly for an hour. Yoga is also shown to improve your body confidence, which can also be linked to your overall happiness. A University of California at Berkeley study found that women who regularly did yoga rated their satisfaction with their bodies 20 percent higher than those who did aerobics.

Reduces Pain

The American Osteopathic Association reports that the relaxation aspects associated with yoga can reduce your chronic pain levels, specifically lower back pains, arthritis pains, headaches and carpal tunnel syndrome. Yoga strengthens muscles and enhances your posture, which leads to the reduction of pain.

Increases Flexibility

If you've ever seen someone doing yoga, it's clear they have to have some sort of flexibility for those crazy poses. However, flexibility doesn't come naturally for everyone, so yoga can enhance limberness. The benefits of flexibility to your health include: improved physical performance, reduced muscle soreness, decreased risk of injury, improved posture and reduced pain levels.

Promotes Muscle Tone and Strength

Certain yoga poses use muscles that aren't triggered in other types of exercise. This strengthens the body and tones muscles in ways that other exercises can't. The key to toning muscles through yoga is the balance needed to hold certain poses. Again, balancing provides strengthening advantages that are unique to yoga.

Enhances Sleep Health

Insomniacs who did 45-minutes of yoga before bed daily for two months, fell asleep 15 minutes faster and slept an hour longer each night. Yoga also helps manage your stress levels, which leads to a more peaceful night's sleep.