Hatha Yoga, which most Americans simply refers to as “yoga,” was initially designed to unify the mind, body and spirit through the use of various yoga postures, breathing, body gestures and internal cleansing. The spiritual aspects of Yoga are entirely optional. Most people in Georgia who practice yoga do so solely for its health benefits.
Some people may feel intimidated at the thought of yoga, but you don’t have to be especially agile or flexible to practice yoga. Just about anyone, regardless of their age, weight or level of physical fitness, can use at least some yoga poses to improve their flexibility, build strength or alleviate certain types of chronic pain.
If you’ve suffered a recent injury or are out of shape, you can start off with simple poses and apply modifications if necessary.
People interested in trying yoga should consult their doctor or chiropractor before giving yoga a whirl.
Why Is Yoga Good for You?
Gentle yoga can help manage a variety of acute and chronic conditions like low back pain, sciatica, neck pain and more. Additionally, practicing yoga may help you:
- Manage stress and reduce daily anxiety
- Improve your sleep
- Lose weight and body fat
- Build lean muscles
- Improve your immune system
- Reduce symptoms of depression
- Get physically stronger, more flexible and balanced
- Prevent heart disease and diabetes
Consistency is Key
The benefits of yoga can only be fully experienced if you develop a consistent routine. Practicing yoga at least three times a week will likely improve your strength, flexibility and your overall well-being. Your doctor may recommend you start slow and only practice simple routines once or twice a week. You’ll likely still experience small physical and mental improvements as long as you remain consistent in your efforts.
Practicing Yoga at Home
You don’t have to purchase an expensive studio membership and attend group classes to practice yoga. Many people perform yoga poses in the safety and comfort of their own home. You don’t even need to set aside a lot of time or perform a long routine – you can just do the poses that help you when you have time and when you need them. All you need is a yoga mat and comfortable workout clothes to get started.
If you’re ready to start your yoga routine, here are some easy and helpful poses for beginners.
- Transfer your weigh to the left side of your body
- While standing on your left leg, bend your right leg up and place your right heel as close to your groin as possible
- Balance your posture with the left thigh
- Hold the position for a few seconds
- Switch legs as needed
Downward Facing Dog
- Get on your hands and knees
- Tuck your toes and engage your core
- Slowly lift your hips back and up
- Press your heels into the floor and hold the position for a few seconds
- Stand up straight with your arms and hands held out slightly from your sides so your body is in the rough shape of a mountain
- Can be used to analyze, hold and reinforce your posture
Legs up the Wall (Viparita Karani)
- Lie with your back on the floor and your butt to a wall
- Let your legs extend straight up from your torso and be supported by the wall
- You may want to put a yoga role or rolled towel under your head or low back for support
- Keep your arms and elbows to your sides on the floor
- Flex your toes to stretch your leg muscles
- Bend your knees to your chest and roll over to your side to get up
As you become comfortable with these movements, you can slowly expand your routine by adding other poses, including more advanced poses. You can find free videos of these Yoga poses and many others online.
If You’re Looking for Ways to Alleviate Your Pain and Improve Mobility, Optimum Health Rehab Can Help
Our Georgia-based team of physical rehabilitation experts can help you alleviate and manage your low back pain. Our chiropractic experts will carefully examine your symptoms and develop the optimal treatment plan for you, including chiropractic adjustments and other manual therapies.Blog