Yoga for Stress Management : Does It Actually Help?

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Bursting some myths regarding Yoga

Myth 1: Yoga should be practiced only by flexible people.

Fact: Yoga combines balance, flexibility, and strength for opening up your muscles, get the right posture, and holding it. Yoga focuses on every muscle and body part. Hence, if you are not flexible, you are surely going to develop flexibility once you start practicing yoga.

Myth 2: Yoga is merely a bragging trend.

Fact: Yoga is much different than the prevailing trends in the market like hugging trees, wearing chic jewelry, tattoos, etc. It is one of the forms of exercising with a number of health benefits like managing blood pressure, reducing stress, improving metabolism and memory, etc. Hence, it is not a trend, but a combination of various healthy postures to keep your body fit.

Myth 3: Yoga should be done only by women.

Fact: Traditionally, Yoga was only practiced by men. However, later even women started participating in performing yoga and the picture changed rapidly after Indra Devi studied yoga in the year 1947. Hence, yoga is for everyone, of every age.

Myth 4: All yoga postures are similar.

Fact: False. Yoga comes with various postures that differ from each other, as well as, focus on working over different body areas. There are again different types of yoga namely Anusara, Bikram, ashtanga, Iyengar, Hatha, prenatal, and restorative yoga. Hence, every posture gives a challenging workout to the entire body.

Myth 5: Small yoga sessions are not effective.

Fact: Yoga is an exercise that keeps your entire body on work. Whether you go for a 150-minute session or practice it for a 30 minute of an intense section, you are sure to receive effective results in both as the body would stretch with similar effects. An essential thing to consider for results is the regularity and consistency while performing yoga.

Yoga and Stress Management

Yoga and Stress Management

“Stress is nothing but the gap between our expectations and reality. More the gap, more the stress.”

Stress and anxiety are spreading their hold rapidly over the world. Today even the children are facing stress and depression issues which are surely going to be dangerous in the future. Again, stress is one of the highly unheeded health issues too. However, the fact is that stress, anxiety, and even depression shouldn’t be entirely dodged. Even a little bit of stress should be well looked after with effective solutions to keep the dangerous side effects on par.

On suffering from stress, the primary thing everyone wants to do is look for an expert in the field and get medications for the same for instant results. But are you sure, the medications are safe for you to start with? So, what is the right path to stress management? To your surprise, Yoga is an agave solution to deal with stress, reduce it, and manage it too.

Yoga is one of the best exercises combining various physical postures, meditation, relaxation, and controlled breathing. It not only helps in healing various physical issues but also reduces and manages the blood pressure levels and sugar levels in the body to have a good heart rate. Similarly, yoga in the form of a mind-body practice helps in reducing stress levels and maintaining a healthy mental state too. With various intensities, forms, and styles, yoga helps in achieving peacefulness for the mind and body which relaxes your stress levels.

Through this piece of information, let’s learn to understand the strong bond between yoga and stress management, and check out if it actually is helpful or not.

Yoga – Why practice it for stress management?

Life is getting hectic these days. Whether you consider the children or even the adults, a busy schedule with too much of work like waking up early for office or school, late-night parties or test preparations, homework, practicing sports, preparing for meetings, etc. is surely going to break you not only physically but mentally also. Again, the day-to-day emotional stress issues like break up with friends, disagreement on particular issues with parents, losing someone near and dear, worries on making important decisions, etc. add to the stress levels.

No doubt, going for massages, bubble baths, a balanced diet, etc. are great to work out on your stress issues, yoga is still much effective among all as it works on mental, emotional and physical areas of the body. Practicing yoga daily would help in building abilities like focus, calmness, relaxation, and balance on your own that automatically aid in stress management.

Benefits of Yoga for Stress Management

Still, confused if you can start with yoga for managing your stress levels? Here are some quick benefits to boost yoga for bidding goodbye to stress.

1. For complete body relaxation

The mental and emotional effects of yoga are widely compared with the soothing effects obtained from a massage session or even a caring cuddle. Practicing yoga would reduce both physical and mental tensions and help your body with complete relaxation. There are certain postures that calm the entire body system, muscles, and even mind, especially the postures with inversions and front bends. Yoga poses also help with external and internal calmness and pacify the adrenal glands. Hence, including yoga in your routine is surely going to add some relaxation to your health both physically and mentally. For body relaxation, try out Shavanasan or Balasana with magical effects.

2. Control over breathing

Yoga aids in having total control over your breathing. This would reduce the stress levels particularly on the neck, back, and shoulders to a great extent. Due to stress and tension, one starts breathing rapidly and in a shallow way which adds to the anxiety and stress levels. Through yoga, you get an opportunity to breathe properly and in a controlled way which also is beneficial for your lungs. Talking about the yoga poses, Pranayama is an important breath work that relaxes the body. Taking deep breathes and slowly releasing them would come up with the best results during stressful situations. Taking deep breathes would help in getting more oxygen for your brain, lungs, and heart which activates the body for relaxation.

3. Complete physical exercise

Yoga not only helps with mental peace but also involves a good amount of physical exercises too. Stretching involved in yoga poses help in developing physical fitness and release stress. Some of the yoga poses are slow while some require fast movements that meet all the requirements for physical fitness as well as personality. Stretching with yoga also releases endorphins from the body that make you feel happy or even better along with releasing pain from the stiff muscles. For better results for physical stress, try out the Hatha Yoga postures with effective stretching.

4. A break for your mind

The brain or mind continuously remains occupied with one or the other thought related to the past, present, or even the future. And this is quite stressful and tiring for the mind. With the help of yoga, you can help your mind with some calmness from all such worries and mental activities. Every breath involved while practicing yoga poses would drag your mind away from the worries about the past, present, and even future. Focusing on exhale and inhale activities would clear out all the thoughts disturbing your mind which makes it one of the best meditation techniques. So, start with yoga and allow your mind to relax.

5. For a strong bond between the body and mind

The prime benefit of going for yoga for stress management is that it builds a strong connection between the body and mind, and this adds easiness and harmony to life. When the balance in life is lost, the body signalizes the mind which increases the pressure and damages the responding ability. Through yoga, sensitivity is observed in the movements and listening abilities of the body. When strong connectivity is established, performing yoga would bring consciousness and mindfulness to life, which gradually reduces the stress levels.

6. For releasing emotional energy

When one suffers from negative emotions, he is likely to pass through guilt, anger and fear, which is at times not expressed. And this increases the stress levels. Hence, activities like getting irritated with minor changes or issues, shouting at children or even partner, snapping at the office, etc. With yoga, the body releases emotional energy. The various postures in yoga release the emotional tension the shoulders and body are suffering with and is quite effective also. Hence, yoga and meditation add positivity in the surrounding while you inhale and exhale that reduces the stress levels to a great extent.

Stress and anxiety limit your activities and bring a drastic change in your mind and body, ultimately keeping you away from your goals and success. With yoga and breathing sessions, you can easily reduce the cortisol that increases the stress levels in the body and keeps you naturally calm and stress-free. Again, yoga would also decrease the chances of suffering from chronic diseases like heart issues and high blood pressure that are highly connected with pain, insomnia, anxiety, and importantly stress. So, start with yoga today for working over your stress levels with ease.

How should I get started with Yoga for Stress Management?

Want to try yoga for reducing and managing the stress levels in your life? Here is how you can start with it for effective results.

How to Do Yoga for Stress Management

1. Ignore the myths

The first step to take while thinking of stress management is ignoring the myths that are stopping you from starting with yoga. Many think yoga is only for the people who are flexible and of a particular age. And due to such myths, they avoid starting with yoga. However, the fact is that yoga keeps you aware of the body and its movement abilities and ultimately reduces the stress levels by working your mind and body.

2. Look for some expert in the field

When starting for the first time, it is highly recommended not to work on the yoga postures on your own. Yoga comes with different levels, styles, and postures. Each posture or yoga style has a different impact on the body if practiced properly. Again, some people are restricted to practice particular postures to avoid any side effects. Going for difficult postures directly is also harmful. Hence, look for an expert in the field or some beginner’s class who would help you with the right way to start with yoga for getting appropriate results.

3. Think about its effectiveness and not exactness

When starting with yoga, one common mistake everyone does is checking out if their posture and movements are accurate and correct. But when doing yoga, it is all about the stretch you feel and not the exactness. Rather than the number of Om chants you speak out and the pose names, it is essential to focus on the relaxation you feel while acting yoga. So, start feeling the effectiveness of yoga on your mind and body rather and give less importance to the precision of the posture.

4. Take care of your body too

Yoga comes with particular limits that differ from person to person. No two people practicing the same posture would hold it for the same time. It totally depends on the flexibility of the body and one’s ability to meet the challenges the posture brings. There would be a posture one would be comfortable performing, while the same would be difficult for the other one. So, listen to your body and limit your stretching and movements until your body is comfortable. Be quite gentle initially when starting with yoga. Don’t overstretch and perform it.

5. Focus on your breath

Yoga primarily involves proper breathing movements. Many of the tutors ask to inhale and exhale while practicing postures through the nose only. When one concentrates on breathing, the body remains warm and the mind completely focused. Concentrating on breathing helps in relieving the stress from mind and body and easily deal with anxiety. Hence, start concentrating on your breathing capabilities while doing yoga to remove all the negative thoughts in the mind and release stress.

6. You are not in any competition

This is not any kind of race or competition you are participating in. Yoga is practiced for internal health and wellness. Fade a goodbye to the competition mood and judgments regarding the postures. Yoga helps you live in the present and keeps you away from the worries related to the past and future. It helps you with mental as well as physical benefits as you spend the required time doing it.

Summary

The best part of starting with yoga is for stress management is that it helps you learn about your body, emotions, and mind perfectly. Through yoga postures, you can add calmness, balance, and relaxation to your life as you face multiple challenges. No doubt, you will not feel calm, energetic, and positive instantly, the yoga poses would still help you with long-term benefits after some weeks of regular workout.

So, when are you starting with yoga to fight your stress levels in a natural way? Share your experiences with us in the comments below.

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