Monthly Archives: October 2017

Beat The Blues With Yoga

The kids are out of control, your job is a hassle and to top it all off, you have no time for yourself. If anyone told you that you could reach a state of physical and emotional bliss, you’d say they were nuts. But believe it or not, you can beat the blues with yoga!

Yoga is a great mood enhancer that requires no drugs or medications. Like all forms of exercise, yoga releases hormones that help ease feelings of stress that often lead to the blahs, blues, or outright depression. Being active keeps your mind away from negative thoughts, and allows you to gain a greater and clearer perspective on the problems you are facing. People who are depressed, or simply feeling “down”, often lack the motivation to exercise. That’s why yoga can be such a great option. It takes far less effort to complete yoga routine as it takes to out to a video or drive to the gym.

A word of warning; if you suffer from more than just the occasional bout of the blues, and feel down for more than two weeks at a time, you should seek professional advice. A doctor or therapist may feel that you need a combination of medication or therapy with exercise.

When you’re feeling down, it’s hard to think positively. People who are depressed often lack the concentration to detach themselves from their thoughts. Yoga is a “moving meditation”, so it is easier to take your mind away from negative thoughts. Our essential inner nature can be blocked by negative thoughts. Apathy, despair, doubt, hopelessness and sleeping too much or too little are all signs of depression that must be addressed. Yoga is designed to bring you closer to your inner truth, naturally helping with some of the symptoms of depression. With a focus on balance, yoga can help to restore mental stability.

There is a definite connection between mind, body and spirit that indicates people can beat the blues with yoga. No other form of exercise alone can achieve these same benefits. Certain Asana yoga postures can influence your mood and help to relieve depression, although Asana can cure depression altogether. Asana postures can help increase low energy levels and relieve lethargy. They are also helpful in opening lung capacity to allow more oxygen to reach all parts of your body, and even your mood. Ask your yoga instructor to help you learn the postures that will balance your moods.

It’s also possible to beat the blues with yoga because of the calming effects yoga has on the nervous system. Proper breathing techniques are important elements to practicing yoga, as these can help curb your anxiety and quiet your thoughts, allowing you to concentrate on positive rather than negative energies. As you learn more about yoga, you’ll come to understand the connection between your mind and your emotions, and you’ll find that they can help each other.

If you think you may be suffering with severe depression, seek professional advice. Yoga is a drug-free alternative that can be safely practiced in conjunction with any medication or therapy your doctor orders. Some yoga routines are specifically designed to alleviate depression and taught by instructors who have been extensively trained to understand the most therapeutic positions.

Even performing the most basic yoga routines can help lift your spirits. While not physically demanding like other forms of exercise, yoga will make you feel much better at the end of a session. Try it and you’ll find that you can beat the blues with yoga!

Benefiting From Your Yoga Practice

Yoga is not only an extremely popular form of exercise, but depending on the form you practice, can be exciting or calming, social or meditative, energizing or relaxing. No matter which of these best describes your yoga class, here are a few tips to help you get the most out of every class you attend.

* Go to yoga class with an empty stomach. Yoga is full bending, twisting, lengthening, stretching, and strength moves. Eating a big dinner before that kind of movement could result in you cramping up or feeling nauseous and having to leave the class or not participate as fully as you’d like.

* Communicate with your yoga instructor. If you have a bad back or a sprained ankle, let your instructor know before class. She or he will offer you adjusted versions of poses or give you a nod when you should skip a pose that could make your condition worse.

* Leave your cell phones and pagers outside. Don’t just put them on silent mode, but literally keep them in the car. This is not only a favor to your classmates and their focus, but your mind should be focused only on yoga and not concerned with whether not someone is trying to contact you about work or spilled juice on the living room carpet.

* Don’t be late and don’t leave early. This disrupts the instructor’s train of thought and the concentration of others in the class. Also, you certainly won’t get everything you can out of your hour if your hour is cut to 50 minutes before you’ve even begun.

* Be respectful of others in the class. This means keeping your voice down when you talk to others and in general, keeping conversation to a minimum. Bring your own towel or yoga mat if you need to and make sure that you are clean and not wearing any perfumes or strong scents. If props are used, make sure that you put yours away when you’re finished and by all means, leave them there for the next class.