Is Yoga the ultimate tool to survive modern life?
Updated: Feb 8
Yoga, rooted in traditional practices originating some 5000 years ago, is gaining in popularity:
- "Yoga" is among the top 15 most popular words in Britain (Source: The Tribune, 2017)
- Worldwide, more than 300 million people practice Yoga with a steep increase of students and teachers over the last few years (Source: The Good Body, 2018)
- Benefits from easing back pain, increased productivity and mental clarity are just a few that have been empirically researched and confirmed (Source: The Good Body, 2018)
Health Benefits & Well-being
Ask around and most people will agree that they perceive Yoga as having health benefits, flexibility and stress relief are a couple of the reasons mentioned as the top reasons for starting Yoga. Interestingly, though, for many who start Yoga for fitness and stress relief reasons, their motivation changes as they stick with Yoga.
Modern Yoga focuses on its physical nature, and it is very, very good for that! Many Yogis and Yoginis practice sports, and Yoga can be a great addition to their fitness workouts, adding the components of stretching and flexibility to their routines. So why do attitudes change the more we engage with Yoga? In the modern Western world, we are dealing with stress on a daily basis, an ever increasing barrage of stressors and not a moment of rest. More and more, we are looking for ways to break out of the rat race, if even just for an hour at a time. Yoga actively invites students to become peaceful, to be at peace, to still and look inwards. Steeped in a rich history of philosophical and ethical principles, Yoga offers a true holistic system for well-being on all levels: body, mind and spirit.
Of course - it's natural! There is no way I can convince you with just words, I could write a blog post a thousand pages long about Yoga, its benefits, how it's helped me over the years to bring calm to my life, how I have been able to re-integrate spiritual aspects into my thinking that I had all but given up on. I can't. It's all about experiencing Yoga, from the physical and breathing of Hatha Yoga practice as a preparation for engaging with the higher principles of Yoga, such as kindness, gratitude, truthfulness, self-discipline, a sense of community, purpose and meaning. Yoga is always non-judgemental, inclusive and compassionate. It will bring you physical health, and it will relief personal suffering and stress - starting one hour at a time. Pure gold!
(Unwind Yoga Studio is located in Cookham, Maidenhead, in Berkshire)