How Yoga Helps Reduce Anxiety and Manage Stress
Yoga is an ancient method of training which means union. It is a union of body, mind, and spirit which is achieved through controlled breathing, meditation, and different body postures. The word yoga is derived from Sanskrit word ‘yug’ and it is a 5000-year-old Indian practice. In the past few decades, the popularity of practicing yoga has amplified. There have been various researches that have proved that yoga offers tremendous health benefits. Some may see it as a mere physical exercise or another type of workout, but the science of yoga is a way of life that unfolds countless potentials of the human mind and soul.
The primary aim of yoga is to create a perfect harmony between body, mind, and spirit. Regular practice of yoga has positive physical as well as mental effects. Few benefits that yoga offers are weight loss, a peaceful mind, glowing skin, and a strong and flexible body. However, along with these, there are some more incredible benefits of practicing yoga regularly, which includes all-around fitness, improved immunity, greater awareness, stress relief, increased energy, better metabolism, etc.
Yoga has proved to be a boon, especially in today’s fast and busy life. Stress and anxiety are everywhere today. People experience these emotions from time to time. Increased demands, uncomfortable events or high levels of competition can make you feel nervous and frustrated which results in anxiety. Although everyday stress and anxiety-like finding a job, first date, job interview or important test is not always bad; however, if these emotions start interfering with your everyday life then it may point towards a more serious issue. If you experience constant worrying, severe anxiety about an event happened weeks before or irrational fears, then you should seek help. As per studies, nearly 40 million adults in U.S.A are affected by anxiety and many more are suffering from depression-related mental disorders. Anxiety and stress management has become very common in today’s time.
The good news is, with regular practice, yoga helps you relax and effectively manage stress and anxiety. Out of the many forms of yoga, Hatha yoga is considered a good option for stress management. Yoga asanas, deep breathing, and meditation together activate the body’s relaxation responses. As you start practicing these techniques, your stress and anxiety levels will decrease significantly and your body and mind will become more peaceful and contented. In 2013, a study by Massachusetts General Hospital found that yoga poses, breathing, and meditation produce immediate, positive change in immune function, insulin secretion, and energy metabolism.
It is important to remember that yoga is much more than just stretching or twisting your body in different postures. To get the best out of every pose, one needs to focus not just on the body but on the mind and breathing while performing these poses. Yoga effectively helps in stress management as it allows you to discover more about your emotions, mental state, and body. It helps you become more relaxed, calm, focused and balanced as you experience the ups and downs of your life. However, acute stress and anxiety is a serious mental condition and one should seek professional help along with yoga to bring the condition under control.
In case of severe stress and anxiety, the treatment involves an amalgamation of proper medication and behavioral therapy.