Discover the many benefits of yoga

The word ‘yoga’ comes from the Sanskrit ‘yuji’ which means yoke or union, representing the practice of bringing together mind and body. The practice of yoga incorporates breathing exercises, meditation and poses designed to encourage relaxation and reduce stress and is said to come with benefits for both mental and physical health, many of which have been backed by science1:

Yoga decreases stress and helps fight depression - multiple studies have shown that yoga can decrease the secretion of the primary stress hormone, cortisol.

Yoga relieves anxiety – practising yoga emphasises the importance of being present in the moment and can help find a sense of peace.

Yoga can reduce inflammation – yoga may reduce inflammatory markers in the body and help prevent pro-inflammatory diseases.

Yoga can improve heart health – yoga lowers blood pressure and pulse rate for a healthier heart.

Yoga could reduce chronic pain – studies have shown improvements in conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome and osteoarthritis.

Yoga can improve sleep quality – yoga increases the secretion of melatonin, the hormone which regulates sleep and wakefulness.

Yoga improves strength, flexibility and balance – just 15-30 minutes of yoga each day can make a noticeable difference.

Yoga can help improve breathing – improvements in lung function have been recorded in both asthma patients and athletes.

Yoga can relieve migraines – practising yoga has helped reduce intensity, frequency and pain in sufferers of migraines.

Yoga promotes healthy eating habits – yoga encourages mindfulness which can help with mindful eating.

If you’re convinced, why not see if there’s a regular yoga class near you or simply search on YouTube for beginner yoga videos and give it a try at home?