Is Yoga Just For Stretching?

Simply put, no.

Yoga combines stretching, breathing exercises, meditation and also encourages people to follow a proper diet.

The word yoga, from the Sanskrit word yuj means to yoke or bind, and is often interpreted as a “union” or a method of discipline. Its ultimate goal is the union of man with God or the universe in one breath. Furthermore, it aims to liberate the spirit as the mind and spirit are equally involved in its practice.

Yoga is one of the oldest existing physical-culture systems in the world. Besides being a systematic and scientifically proven path to attaining physical fitness, it delays aging, rejuvenates and improves one’s appearance, maintains flexibility and increases vitality.

When practicing yoga’s core warm-up exercises, known as the Sun Salutations, the inversion poses, forward and backward bending poses, balancing exercises for the arms and building focus; the average practitioner will attest to the fact that for attaining fitness, yoga can stand on its own.

What about building strength?  Yes, indeed!  Holding certain yoga poses for 90 seconds is a challenge.  A gym’s heaviest lifters would be hard pressed to do so.

Yoga also offers unique breathing exercises which are wonderful for patients with respiratory disorders, such as asthma and even singers and public speakers.  Likewise, relaxation pose offers a systematic means of deeply relaxing the entire body in a way that no other exercise can.

With countless books, DVD’s, videos and classes being offered for all ages, levels of fitness and experience, yoga is absolutely worth a try.  At the very least, one will leave yoga class knowing it is NOT just for stretching!