What are the Physical & Mental Health Benefits of Yoga?

Yoga which originated in India 5000 years back has become a renowned name all over the globe. Yoga is a form of exercise that helps in rejuvenating the body and mind. Yoga also helps in soothing broken and tarnished souls, heals mental ailments and has a very scintillating experience over the body. The combination of yoga exercise involves stretching of muscles, muscle toning, controlled slow breathing along with meditation. Yoga keeps the body filled with energy all through the day even in stressful situations. So, here we discuss the physical and mental health benefits of yoga over body and mind on different levels. Perhaps, the best thing you would find in yoga is that individuals of any age can easily do yoga and avail its benefits. You can do yoga either early in the morning or at evening. All you need is an open space, a mat and physical and mental presence to grasp the benefits of Yoga.

What are the Physical & Mental Health Benefits of Yoga?

What are the Physical Health Benefits of Yoga?

The physical benefits of yoga need no introduction. All over the world, the effect of yoga on the body is well known. Today, millions of people are doing yoga in order to get that physical and mental strength. Yoga enhances the endurance level of the body and also benefits vital organs like heart, liver, lungs, kidney and brain. Though we do not consider Yoga as a panacea of all the ailments, yet Yoga helps in relieving many problems like constipation, obesity, anxiety, hormonal imbalances, respiratory problems, allergy issues and many reproductive disorders. Moreover various yoga asanas, such as “Hath Yoga,” practice of “shad karma,” (which involves six different practices of purification of the body and the soul) are mainly developed for the health benefits of humans.

Yoga Asanas for Improving Flexibility & Strength

Yoga asanas like the “Padmasana,” “Siddhasana,” “Sukasana” render agility and stability to the body so that a person can sit for those meditations for a long period of time.

Digestive Health Benefits of Yoga

Asanas like the “Hamasana” and “Mayurasana” help in strengthening the arms, shoulders, improves digestion and also helps in removing constipation of the body. These asanas also eradicate harmful toxins from the body.

Benefits of Yoga in Relieving Back Pain

Similarly yoga asanas which involve an individual to bend backwards like “Makarasana,” “Bhujangasana,” “Ushtrasana,” “Dhanurasana” etc. are effective Yoga exercises for relieving back pain and spinal problems. These Yoga exercises are perhaps best for people above the age of 30 because after this age, people are prone to getting back problems.

Respiratory Health Benefits of Yoga

Now for nasal relief, the “Hatha yoga” exercise is beneficial for the nasal hygiene. This yoga asana helps in removing sinusitis and it also helps in relieving allergies from the body. These Yoga exercises also work miraculously in helping people suffering from chronic migraines.

Benefits of Yoga in Improving Mood and Losing Weight

Similarly the “Surya Namaskara” is also a Yoga exercise that strengthens the mind, vitalizes the entire body, removes depression and lethargy and boosts up the body’s metabolism by burning calories at effective rate.

So the list which compiles the pros and benefits of yoga on the physical well being of a person is endless.

Summing up the Physical Health Benefits of Yoga Below:

  • Yoga improves the flexibility in the body, muscle arms and improves muscle toning.
  • Yoga reduces pain of spine, joints, back, migraines and body pain.
  • Yoga improves blood circulation of the body which also detoxifies the body of harmful contents.
  • Yoga helps in controlling blood pressure.
  • Yoga boosts metabolism and also improves digestion.
  • Yoga controls and balances the hormonal system of our body.

What are the Mental Health Benefits of Yoga?

Yoga if done with meditation, determination, breath awareness along with “pranayama” brings lot of peace of mind and reduces tension and anxiety in people. Those who experience heaviness in their minds; and those who have disruption in their body and mind connection, Yoga can help in reconnection and rejuvenating the mind and body once again.

Mental Health Benefits of Yoga Involving Concentration:

Mind fluctuation/distraction/lack of concentration can easily be controlled by “Hatha Yoga” practice. For example, “Trataka” which means focusing or concentrating on a single object or point for some time brings the mind in control. Yoga prepares the body to face all the situations of life with steady calm approach. It also allows an individual to establish and maintain healthy relationships with people.

Yoga for Better Clarity & Decision Making Ability:

For instance “Vigyanamaya kosha,” or intellectual sheath strengthens the decision making ability of the body. The intellect being a subtler part of the brain is known for making decisions. A turbulent or troubled mind would succumb in stressful situations or the person would take wrong ad-hoc decisions. Practicing Pranayama along with meditation improves the fluctuation of human mind. It enhances clarity in an individual’s mind and helps to deal with situations in a more effective manner.

Yoga for a Calm Mind:

Also, spiritual seekers or yoga masters seek their path of knowledge to strengthen the mind and body. These practitioners do “Jnana Yoga” to help reduce the menace prevailing in the mind. According to them, the human mind works and behaves like a monkey actively without any permission. By controlling this prana can gradually bring the mind under control. So in a calm mind, one would be able to find solace, peace and the life of an individual would also be eased.

Mental Health Benefits of Yoga in Removing Depression, Anxiety & Stress:

People suffering from depression and anxiety can turn their heads towards yoga that would not only lessen their sorrows, but would also heal their fragmented mind. A person battling with any sort of internal issues would find it difficult to keep pace with his/her social life. Be it the work place, personal life or relationship with society, a confused depressed mind with mingled up and low thoughts would find it extremely difficult to walk with the world. There are chances, that one may collapse and at times many detrimental effects are also seen like suicides or self destruction. So yoga can help a person overcome depression and other mental illness.

Summing up the Mental Health Benefits of Yoga Below:

  • Yoga improves concentration, focus of thoughts and mental clarity.
  • Yoga reduces stress, combats depression and anxiety issues in an individual through enhanced endorphin secretions.
  • Yoga stabilizes mood.
  • Yoga enhances feeling of personal well being.
  • Yoga brings the mind at peace.
  • Yoga controls uncontrolled thoughts; and body actions get a direction.
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 3, 2017

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