In my opinion, yoga is the best form of exercise for health, beauty, emotional/spiritual wellbeing, and of course flexibility. The practice of yoga stretches and strengthens the body while conditioning the mind.
Yoga opens blocked pathways so that blood, nutrients and oxygen to the organs, tissues, glands, cells, bones and nerves can be circulated to more effectively. It also encourages the clearing of energetic passageways for emotional, mental and spiritual well being.
In addition to muscular toning and elimination of excess body fat, yoga beautifies the skin (the largest organ of our body), brightens the eyes, and takes years off of our physical appearance.
In order to attain all of the benefits of yoga, it is important to be mindfully aware of the body and breath throughout the practice.
A mindful practice not only deepens the physical benefits of yoga, but it develops our ability to control the thought patterns of the mind. This is very valuable because when we give ourselves the ability to control our thought patterns, we put ourselves in control of our emotions and consequently the direction of our lives.
For most people this can prove to be challenging at first, but like everything else, with practice we can master anything. The important thing to remember is that it is perfectly normal for the mind to wander numerous times during a yoga session. An integral part of the practice is to keep reminding ourselves (without self-judgment) to bring our minds back to the feelings in the body and the rhythm of the breath.
In order to develop a deep yoga practice including control over a wandering mind, I strongly recommend Kundalini Yoga. This form of yoga makes the body/mind integration easy to learn and understand.
My favorite yoga DVD’s are by Ana Brett and Ravi Singh. They have produced many different programs which can be modified according to ability and energy level. The best part is that they offer instruction for physical and mental direction throughout every DVD.
Please check out the links below, and make a commitment to improving your life with yoga today! Sat Nam.