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What is Yoga and What are the Surprising Benefits for You?

If you’re wondering “what is yoga?”, you’re in luck.

I’ve been wondering the same thing too.

I’ve also been feeling overwhelmed by the volume of information that is available on this topic.

There’s the clothing, the poses, the lingo, the food, the philosophy. 

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I mean, what on earth is an asana?

what is yoga and what are the benefits
practicing upward facing dog

[sociallocker]PS: asana is just fancy lingo for the word, “pose” like the one I’m doing above.

See what I mean? Super confusing for us beginners. 

So, let’s answer this question, once and for all, in a way that makes sense for us.

What is yoga (in practical terms)?

Yoga is a system of physical exercise that emphasizes breathing control and the use of poses.

There are so many ways to complicate this but this post is for beginners so we’ll leave this there.

There’s no need to go into the ancient Indian origins or start rambling about “hatha” and stuff.

Yoga, for our purposes, is exercise.

And it is a form of exercise that emphasizes poses and controlled breathing. 

Done. 

You’re welcome 🙂

Now, let’s move on to the benefits.

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Benefits of Yoga for Beginners

I started practicing yoga because I was experiencing lower back pain after the birth of my son.

I went to see a Physical Therapist and he encouraged me to do certain stretches. 

To my surprise, these “stretches” turned out to be popular yoga poses.

what is yoga?
Practicing standing forward bend

I really enjoyed doing them and so, I continued. 

Ever since I started practicing yoga, I’ve enjoyed the following benefits: 

1. Enjoyment

I actually enjoy doing yoga. It feels good to my body

2. Cool Clothes

Now, I have a legitimate excuse to shop for all sorts of funky Yoga pants

3. Flexibility

I can actually bend over and touch my toes now 

4. Lower stress

Yoga has helped me to learn how to breathe properly, which does miracles for reducing stress

5. Better sleep

I practice yoga at night – right before bed. It helps me sleep more deeply

In a Nutshell

what is yoga?

Yoga, for our purposes, is simply exercise that emphasizes correct breathing and the use of poses.

what are the benefits of yoga?

The benefits of yoga vary by individual and can range from a tighter core to better sleep.[/sociallocker]