The Benefits Of Yoga By Mi-Mi

Hi all!

It’s been a while since I last wrote for GGD but when I was given the opportunity to write a yoga post I literally leapt at the chance!

I first discovered yoga over a year ago when I was on holiday in Greece with my friend. Every morning we started the day with yoga on the balcony overlooking the hills and a peek of the ocean...sounds like bliss...and it was, from that moment I was hooked and knew I had found “my thing”. 

When I got back to the UK I found a local yoga studio and signed up for a 4 week beginner course. I always thought that to do yoga you had to be bendy and able to stand on your head! That’s certainly not the case, it’s listening to your body and being engaged in your yoga practice.  The person next to you or in front of you may be able to hold a pose for longer or get into a deeper lunge but it’s not a competition, yoga should never be uncomfortable, it’s the time for you to get to know your body.  The teacher is there to help guide you through the practice but you move at your own pace and rest when your body needs to. 

I like to do yoga a few times a week, be it at a yoga studio or at home.  When I am at the yoga studio I find it really helpful to have the teacher guide me to ensure I am holding the poses correctly and effectively which is good to remember when I’m at home doing it alone. Saying that, when I’m at home I’m not completely alone in my practice as I follow a guided lesson either on YouTube or via an app, of which there are hundreds to choose from!

Yoga is great for your health too, it’s a full body and mind workout. It’s great for strengthening and stretching, combined with deep breathing and relaxation techniques and meditation.  The yoga studio I go to is actually a hot yoga studio, this means doing yoga in 40’ heat which has its health benefits too. Practicing yoga in the heat allows you to burn fat more effectively as your heart rate increases and also increases metabolism levels which helps you to tone your body and loose weight.  As the heat is so intense you sweat A LOT, which is good because it promotes detoxification through the skin.  Because of this I always make sure I drink plenty of water before and after my yoga workout.  The heat also makes your muscles limber allowing deeper stretches and poses as they become warmer quicker and are more elastic. 

The main and original context of yoga was spiritual practices to train the body and mind to self observe and be aware of their own nature, therefore I think surroundings and a comfortable yoga mat during my practice are very important.  I personally like to do it in a warm low lit room with my candles and incense burning with some relaxing zen music on.  I have somewhat of a collection of yoga mats now but one of my favourites is my new stunning green yoga mat in a beautiful peacock design.  Perhaps head to the web page yourself and have a browse at the stunning mats they have to offer and get inspired to get your yoga on!

The one thing I always take away with me after a yoga session is that I always feel great afterwards! When I’m on my yoga mat I think of nothing else just my yoga practice at that moment, all other thoughts are left off the mat.  I find it really boosts my mood no matter what I’ve had to deal with in life that day.  With that said it’s time for me to join some fellow yogis and hit the yoga studio now...

Until next time

Mi-Mi xx

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