As discussed last week, a diverse cross-section of gym-goers are working yoga workouts into their routines – and falling in love with it – each month. And don’t worry about filling up our classes, because we’re happy to add more as demand increases. We try to spread them out at different intervals and different times a day – such as Sunrise Yoga – to target all the different participants who might be interested.

Last time we talked about some of the reasons that yoga is gaining popularity and even provided an overview of how it can improve your health. This and next week, we want to expand on that theme by discussing some of the top ways that yoga can benefit your well-being in areas you might never have anticipated.

Physical Benefits

Yoga is extremely beneficial to the human heart. It helps slow your pulse and reduces blood pressure. It also decreases bad cholesterol while improving good cholesterol. From there, it actually improves blood circulation through the body. In the pursuit of controlling your heart rate, you also learn to control your breathing, which is ideal for respiratory ailments. With calm, balanced breathing, you have a calibrated amount of oxygen deposited into your body and bloodstream. This also has a calming effect – both in terms of your emotional state and in terms of getting your body to relax and open up.

The motions and poses help you stretch and condition muscles all throughout your body, making yoga a comprehensive exercise plan. As you tone your body, you also gain strength and learn how to apply that strength in everyday activities, from loading groceries to picking up your pet. You also learn to identify your muscle groups and then use them in harmony, whether you’re taking a scenic stroll or heading into the gym to complete further workouts.

Mental Benefits

Yoga is peaceful and meditative in nature, and can put you more in tune with your needs and desires. It can help you focus and redirect your thoughts into positive channels. This can ameliorate depression and reduce anxiety. Yoga instructors often talk about self-actualization as you turn your thoughts inward for self-exploration and recognition. This can help you build self-awareness first, followed by self-esteem. Both because of this dedicated “me time” and due to endorphins released while you move, you’re likely to leave class in an elevated mood, which stays with you well past the end of your Greenville yoga session.

Believe it or not, next week we investigate even more benefits of yoga! Don’t miss it.