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Yoga: Uses and Resources

Updated on June 18, 2014

I don't know about you, but I'm getting really jealous of those people doing crazy yoga poses on the Grand Canyon. For some reason I want to be crazy flexible; I want to be able to contort my body into these shapes and hold them long enough for someone to take a picture. That's why I'm going to start yoga!

But apart from looking good, what are the benefits of yoga? Why should you incorporate it into your exercise routine?

  • Stress relief. The concentration you put into performing various yoga poses and relaxing your body brings a lot of mental calmness.
  • Learn to breathe. In yoga you learn how to breathe properly through techniques called pranayams, and how to take deeper breaths that benefit your body.
  • Strength and balance. Okay, so you may lift weights but can you support the weight of your own body in a Wounded Peacock pose? You will build strength and balance in ways you've never thought you could.

  • Joint health and pain prevention. There is a reason why many people recovering from various injuries do yoga. The increased flexibility and strength can prevent causes of back pain, as yoga relieves tightness and spinal compression. People that already have something like arthritis can see a big improvement in their pain and mobility too.
  • And of course, flexibility! All the stretching will increase your flexibility immensely! The bigger range of motion will no doubt help you in other sports too, such as lifting. You can finally do that ATG squat!

Yoga Resources

Now that we know the benefits of regular yoga practice, let's go over some great resources.

Yogis Anonymous. Online yoga classes.
YogaGlo. Over 2,000 yoga videos. Offers a free 15 day trial.Yoga Journal. You see this website get tossed around and mentioned a lot, don't you? It's earned its place. Articles, videos and many many other things on yoga. Their yoga sequence builder is here.
Yoga Download. This link goes to the section for free classes.
DoYogaWithMe. 100% free yoga videos.
YOME. Another 100% free yoga resource.
A comprehensive review on yoga apps.

YouTube channels
Yoga Vidya
Yoga Today (beautiful locations!)
Yoga Yak
Tara Stiles
Steve Ross's Inhale videos

Of course, it would also be a good idea to join a class, as the yoga instructor can guide you through every pose and correct your mistakes.

Hopefully you feel like starting yoga now, and good luck!

Do you do yoga?

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    • Danida profile image

      Danida 3 years ago from London

      @FlourishAnyway: I am not patient at all either! I am much more interested in their flexible poses than the breathing and relaxed poses, and it seems there's a lot of that to get through before you reach the impressive stage. Still, it's worth it!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      I have tried yoga and although I am envious of their flexibility, I am not sure I have the focus and patience for the exercise. I like the tree pose and the warrior pose though.