The term “yoga” is coined from the Sanskrit word “Yuj” which means “Union”. The union of body, mind and soul. The practice of yoga dates back to ancient India and hence, since then have been transformed into various recreational forms of exercise. But the benefits of yoga surpass any other form of relaxation exercise. Yoga is not just a comprehensive exercise to grow abs and lose weight. It is a way of living.
Mindfulness brings us awareness of our being. When practicing mindfulness, we focus on our body sensations, feelings and emotions running through us and our environment. Doing a body scan is a common relaxation practice while being mindful. Adding yoga in the mix makes us more alert and strengthen awareness of our body.
What is Mindful Yoga?
Mindful yoga is a beautiful amalgamation of two mind relaxing and body healing techniques- Mindfulness and Yoga. Instead of focusing on maintaining a perfect posture like in yoga, mindful yoga focuses on the movement of our body and concentrating on our breathing. The yoga is made up of 8 components basically. Two of them being- the asana and the dhyana. The “dhyana” part of yoga is nothing but meditating on nothing in particular. Mindful yoga is a blend of asana and a modified version of dhyana where we concentrate on our body and feelings instead.
How to practice Mindful Yoga?
- For the starter, try finding a peaceful and comfortable place to sit. Mornings are the best time for practice due to quiet and minimum distractions.
- Sit on your mat in a straight and relaxed Don’t keep your back rigid. Also, keep your phone away on silent.
- Start by concentrating on your breathing. Just notice the pattern of your breathing but don’t force it to change. Slowly, you will find your breaths turning shallow and your body
- Perform a body scan. Start with your toes and slowly and gently move your attention upwards. Don’t try to rush it. Take your time. Absorb the sensations of each part of your body. Absorb and let it go. Don’t try to analyze
- There are various yoga asana that relieve stress. Practice those asana and keep your attention on the movement of your body, the sensation in your muscles and how it changes your breathing pattern. Some of the poses you can try are triangle pose, Mountain pose (Tadasana), Warrior pose, Child’s Pose (Balasana), Cow pose, Cobra pose and shavasana
What are the benefits of Mindful Yoga?
There are ample proven benefits of practicing mindful yoga and being the hot topic it is, more are being researched.
- Increases Pain Endurance: Practicing mindful yoga can reduce even chronic pain. With regular practice, it increases the pain tolerance capacity of our
- Relieves Stress and Anxiety: Mindful yoga is a positivity booster for those going through depression or anxiety disorders. With calmness comes acceptance. With acceptance comes awareness to deal with reality and uncomfortable situations. Anxiety stems from ignorance of our problems and letting them pile up. At the end, it becomes too much to handle. Mindful yoga is a constructive way to manage your feelings of stress and
- Better Decision Making: Often stress ridden minds are known to make bad or impulsive decisions. The inability to focus on finding the solution than on problem in turn puts us more under pressure. With awareness and clear mind, we are able to analyze a situation better and try to find creative solutions. A mindful brain is more effective in dissecting a problem and working towards smart
- Increases Lung Capacity and good for cardiovascular health: Research has proven that mindful yoga reduces the cardiovascular risk and is good for the general well-being of our heart. Breathing practice is known to increase the lung capacity providing ample oxygen
- Overall well-Being: Mindful yoga benefits both body and mind. It lowers the blood pressure and helps with hypertension. It boosts immunity by stimulating the lymphatic system our body which is responsible for fighting viruses and germs. It sharpens memory and increases focus. It calms the mind and helps in sleeping.
At the end, we can conclude that mindful yoga practice is a package program focusing on healing of mind, body and soul giving us a sharper personality and a sense of happiness.