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What is Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga?

An important component of yoga is its functional nature. As a result, all body systems and parts work together to form a whole, which is how the human body is used. As a result of this work, you will burn more calories, improve body/mind awareness, and enhance the movement pathways in the body for enhanced agility, mobility, and grace.

Today, we will be looking at how Vinyasa Yoga can help with your core strength as well as other benefits this yoga practice has. 

What is Vinyasa Yoga?

Vinyasa yoga involves flowing from posture to posture in a seamless manner, using your breath to connect one to the next.  Also known as “flow” yoga. 

Vinyasa Yoga consists of a variety of movements that help to develop a more balanced body and prevent repetitive motion injuries that can occur if you always do the same thing every day.

The philosophy of Vinyasa acknowledges that things are temporary.  We enter into a posture, remain there for a while, then leave. 

Vinyasa is said to have originated with T Krishnamacharya, who has had the greatest impact on how yoga is practiced today.

If you combine all this, you can see that Vinyasa is a breath-based practice that connects every action of our life with the intent of moving towards what is sacred to us.

How does it help with core strength?

By bringing the body into a state of physical strength, flexibility, and vitality, as well as the mind into a state of balance and stillness, Vinyasa Flow helps you create a “container” for your experiences and movements.

Ashtanga Vinyasa exercises are known as Vinyasas or flows, and they help you build strength, specifically in the core and upper body, which enhances posture and improves your daily activity, and allows you to maintain a strong metabolic rate.

By practicing Vinyasa Flow, one can build and maintain strong bones, muscles, and connective tissue to maintain a high metabolism, a healthy posture, and an active and alive body. As you get stronger, you are able to build a stronger core. This results in better posture, a stronger body and a better overall lifestyle. 

What are the benefits of Vinyasa yoga?

Vinyasa yoga can improve your energy levels whilst promoting relaxation and helping to lower your stress levels. Other benefits include:

  • Endurance and strength training
    Due to the challenging poses are done in quick succession, Vinyasa yoga helps build muscle strength while improving your fitness.
  • Stability and balance
    a 2015 study,  in the journal ‘PLoS One’ found that for people with low vision, a course of Ashtanga-based yoga led to an improved sense of balance and a decreased risk of falling.
  • Cardio workout
    According to a 2013 study in the Journal of Yoga & Physical Therapy, Vinyasa yoga is a light-intensity cardio workout because of its fast-paced movements.
  • Lower stress and anxiety
    Vinyasa yoga was found to be beneficial to women going through cognitive behavioral therapy to stop smoking, according to a 2012 study. This yoga practice also helped the study participants to quit smoking. 

Final Thoughts

When developing strength, it’s important to work at your own pace, modifying rotations and movements as your body gets stronger and more flexible, as well as your technique improves. Always prioritize technique and safety over intensity or repetition. Your Vinyasa Flow Yoga practice will be most rewarding if you work in the posture you desire.

The Benefits Of Yoga For Core Strength

Yoga emphasizes the importance of establishing a relationship with the core. You’re stabilized by your core muscles primarily.

Additionally, your abdomen is a very specialized area of your body. You cannot protect or support it from your skeleton. In addition to keeping you upright, your abdominal muscles provide space for your organs to do their work.

Core muscles play a crucial role in posture, balance, and spinal stability. In addition to allowing you to carry out different yoga poses with grace and steadiness, your core is also important because it harmonizes the movements of your upper and lower body.

Why is core strength important in Yoga?

Core muscles are multi-functional and comprehensive. As you practice yoga, core training will not only improve your poses and your transition between postures, but it will also relieve back pain, increase your inner strength, improve your posture, increase your flexibility, and ensure that you stay balanced as you perform complicated poses.

Core training improves flexibility, control, endurance, and functionality as well.

How to engage your core muscles in yoga

A regular yoga practice for your core and back will help you establish a strong relationship with your core. Even if you can’t locate your abdominal muscles at first, you can tone your abdomen with yoga.

Yoga asanas (body postures) almost always require core strength and balance. Yoga poses like inversions, twists, standing postures, and balance poses require abdominal strength, but they also condition your abdominal muscles, making them easier as you progress.

It is not just about postures and movements when it comes to strengthening the core, building flexibility, and improving motor control. Pranayama is a form of traditional breathwork that strengthens the transverse abdominus and the diaphragm. In spite of the fact that the diaphragm is not an abdominal muscle, it plays an important role in how your heart, lungs, and other organs work when you breathe.

If you want to maximize the benefits of yoga and work on your core muscles from every angle, you should include inverted poses, yoga for obliques, standing postures, and folding positions in your yoga practice. Beginners should learn yoga poses that strengthen the core.

The benefits of a strong core in Yoga

Building core strength has countless benefits. A strong abdominal wall will promote digestion and elimination by holding abdominal organs in place. You can also increase your sexual fulfillment by strengthening the pelvic floor muscles at the base of your core. Other benefits include:

Lowers your risk of back pain

Pain in the low back is debilitating. In addition to supporting your spine, your abs are crucial in supporting your entire midsection. Your back muscles, as well as the surrounding muscles, have to work harder if those muscles are weak.

Conversely, if your abs and back muscles are strong, holding your spine in the proper position is much easier and the risk of straining muscles is much lower. Even back pain sufferers are often recommended to use core strengtheners as a form of therapy

Improves your balance

As we age, balance becomes more important. It helps prevent us from falling and getting hurt. A strong core will help ensure that you have a better balance and stability

Helps you achieve a proper posture

Standing tall and holding your head high as you stand upright is the key to good posture. However, most of us don’t realize this, and we tend to slump forward and round our shoulders.

Weak core muscles may contribute to the problem. By strengthening your core, you improve your posture, thus allowing you to breathe more deeply and not wear your spine out as much, all of which will help you stay healthier.

Helps improve your performance of daily tasks 

With a strong core, simple movements will require less effort and energy, and your yoga practice will be more effective.

When we talk about core, we’re not just talking about your abs. It is important to strengthen your abdominal muscles as well as your lower back muscles.

How does yoga help with core strength?

Strength is a key component of yoga. This exercise uses your body weight to make you stronger and to increase your muscle tone. A yoga workout is a whole-body exercise, unlike weight training that isolates movements. Your daily activities will benefit from increased strength.

What type of yoga is best for core strength? 

If you would like to build a stronger core, consider Ashtanga, Power, or Rocket Yoga. these types of yoga will help you tone and strengthen your core in a healthy and safe manner. 

What are some of the common yoga poses that are best for core strength?

Below are four of the most common yoga poses to help you strengthen your core 

Plank Pose

The abdominal muscles, the shoulders, and the lower back are undoubtedly strengthened by planks. Planking sounds simple enough, but you want to make sure that your form is good so that your shoulders stay safe.

Four-limbed Staff Pose (CHATURANGA DANDASANA)

Essentially, this is a conscious pushup that you can perform in a mindful way. Instead of doing one Chaturanga, do five in a row, returning to Plank each time. It’s a good pose for beginners. 

Cobra Pose

The rare opportunity to exercise your underused back muscles is presented by this exercise. It is important to take a solemn vow not to cheat this pose in order to take full advantage of Cobra’s strength-building potential.

Boat Pose

One of yoga’s greatest abdominal exercises is The Boat. Here, we’re not interested in whether you can fully straighten your legs. What matters most is the relationship between your torso and thighs. Here you want to keep the V shape nice and sharp. You should keep your knees bent for now if you straighten your legs and your V gets low and loose. 

Conclusion 

When you start incorporating core muscle training into your yoga routine, you will see a marked improvement in your poses and practice – along with your body in general. However, your sense of well-being will be the most important difference. Besides becoming more fluid in your practice, you will also gain a deeper connection with your body and experience stronger inner strength. 

The Longevity Benefits of Yoga

A deeper understanding of the longevity benefits of Yoga

Globally, the population is aging at an unprecedented rate. Over 2 billion people will be over the age of 60 by 2050. As we age, we’re likely to experience more age-related degenerative problems, but declining health doesn’t have to be an inevitable part of getting older. Research has shown that yoga can have a beneficial impact on aging prevention and even reversal. 

Today, we will look at how yoga can increase the longevity of the human body, mind, and soul. 

What is Yoga?

According to Medical News Today, Yoga is a mind and body practice. Various styles of yoga combine physical postures, breathing techniques, and meditation or relaxation. 

Yoga dates back thousands of years. It is a practice that involves breathing, meditation, and exercise and is based on the philosophy of man striving to be in harmony with himself and the world.

The chakras are said to be centers of energy, thoughts, feelings, and the physical body. As per yogic teachings, chakras determine how people experience reality through emotional reactions, desires and aversions, levels of confidence or fear, and even physically manifesting symptoms.

Whenever energy is blocked in a chakra, it leads to physical, mental, or emotional imbalances that manifest as symptoms such as anxiety, lethargy, or poor digestion.

According to a 2017 national survey, one in seven adults in the United States practiced yoga in the past 12 months.

In what ways does yoga promote health and well-being?

Yoga makes people more aware of their bodies and the importance of taking care of them, including exercising and eating healthily. In addition to increasing control over the body and food choices, yoga can also reduce anxiety, a factor that drives overeating.

Yoga helps you utilize your body as a whole.

As part of balanced yoga practice, every part of the body is utilized. The practice begins with sun salutations to warm up the body, followed by twists, inversions, backbends, seated poses, core work, and corpse pose (final relaxation pose). With age, unused parts of our bodies can tighten and become incapable of functioning correctly. A regular yoga practice keeps your body working at its optimal. 

Helps with joint protection

Poses that are weight-bearing such as plank, chaturunga, and downward facing dog, keep the joints in good health without putting too much strain on them.

Helps with overall balance 

The ability to maintain balance becomes more difficult as you age, especially if you lack practice. In yoga, balancing poses like eagle pose (garudasana), half moon pose (ardha chandrasana), and side plank pose (vasisthasana) help you develop the focus and skill necessary to maintain balance and stay agile.

How does yoga support longevity?

Research was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease in 2016. Researchers found that yoga promotes brain activity, precisely memory function, more effectively than puzzles or other mind-stimulating activities. Participants in the study reported decreased levels of anxiety and stress, which are both associated with faster aging.

A 2017 study shows the impact yoga and meditation have on cellular aging.

 “Making yoga and meditation an integral part of our lifestyle may hold the key to delay aging, or aging gracefully, prevent the onset of multifactorial complex lifestyle diseases, promote mental, physical, and reproductive health, and prolong youthful healthy life,” wrote lead researchers from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences.

Yoga helps us become more aware of our bodies, improves our postures, increases our body’s sensitivity, then allows us to feel subtle energies moving around it.  As a result, we must pay attention to anything that doesn’t feel right in the body and correct it before it starts getting out of hand.

Life depends on the breath, and people underestimate how important it is. Our bodies gain more life force and energy by practicing yoga because it increases lung capacity and oxygen flows to all the cells. When we start to breathe better and become aware of what we are doing, we can begin to consume more air, which can help with digestion and reduce blood pressure. 

What types of yoga poses are considered the best for longevity? 

Most forms of yoga can help give you anti-aging benefits. The three following yoga postures can help you live a longer life. 

Tadasana- Mountain 

For this pose, you will need to stand straight and lift straight arms above your head. You are breathing deeply throughout the pose. This helps you open up your body, lungs and stretches out the muscles to help your body get ready for the next poses in your yoga session. 

Uttanasana- Forward Fold 

This pose gently folds your body whilst you focus on your breathing. It allows you to stretch your lower body and spine. 

While strengthening the knees and thighs, this posture lengthens the hamstrings, calves, and hips. By stimulating liver and kidney function, it also activates the parasympathetic nervous system. Reduces stress and mild depression by calming the brain.

Ardha Chandrasana- Half Moon 

Regularly challenging our balance will help us age gracefully. In addition to strengthening the abdomen, ankles, thighs, and spine, this posture also increases flexibility. As well as stretching hamstrings and calves, it improves coordination and stretches shoulders and chest. When in a balance pose such as this, your brain lightens up like fireworks, making you more mentally alert and attentive.

Takeaways 

Even though yoga doesn’t offer a one-day policy benefit, you need to be patient, and yes, yoga also teaches patience.  When you practice yoga at least three times a week, you will be able to experience those anti-aging benefits. It will not only become apparent to you but also to others. 

Yoga truly helps transform people’s lives for the better, and professionals say that they see this on a regular basis. There’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all Yoga practice; yoga is a whole way of life. Stress, balance, and anti-aging are all benefits of yoga. You need to find a yoga practice that works for you. 

You’ll never look back once you’ve tried it, especially when it comes to the benefits of anti-aging.

What is The Yoga Philosophy?

Understanding Yoga and its Philosophy

Did you know that Yoga is one of the six primary orthodox schools of Hinduism? Ancient, Medieval, and most modern literature often refers to Yoga philosophy as Yoga. 

Yoga helps relax your mind, body, and soul. It is a modality that can help awaken your deepest thoughts, allowing you to work through your emotional traumas and make peace with them. 

Yoga is often seen as an exercise that can help strengthen your core, but there is more to this modality than you think. Below, we will learn the philosophy of yoga, some of its benefits, and the overall goal of this practice. 

The Yoga Philosophy

Yoga has one main philosophy: mind, body, and spirit are connected and cannot be separated. 

The practice of yoga helps give us a blueprint to follow. It is believed that this blueprint will help lead us to a happier, healthier, and peaceful life. It is going to help guide you to a deep and long-lasting feeling of contentment. 

Yoga is similar to Buddhism in the sense that it is believed that spiritual ignorance creates suffering and binds us to the wheel of Samara. This is the cycle of rebirth. If we take away the ignorance, we can walk down the path of a better lifestyle, a happier soul, and overall better wellbeing. 

The Benefits of Yoga

Yoga can provide you with several benefits. Some benefits are even scientifically proven

  1. Improves your strength, balance, and flexibility
    By doing slow movements and deep breathing, you can increase your blood flow and warm up your muscles. This will help with your muscle flexibility. The poses are designed to strengthen your muscles which will result in better balance. 
  2. It May help ease Arthritis symptoms
    Johns Hopkins reviews 11 studies. The studies suggest that gentle yoga movements can ease some of the discomfort and pain caused by arthritis in your joints. 
  3. Aids in relaxation
    Studies have shown that having a consistent bedtime yoga routine can help you get into the right mindset before bed. This will prepare your body to fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night. 
  4. Helps with stress management
    Yoga helps you deal with your stress and improves your mental health, mindfulness, and quality of sleep. By doing yoga regularly, you will be able to clear your mind, which can help you manage stressful situations better. 

What is the Ultimate Goal of Yoga?

The ultimate goal of yoga is a sustained state of pure awareness. This is known as the state of Moksha or Samadhi. Yoga helps one transcend the mind to realize the highest self or one’s true self. 

It helps you become one with your body. You learn how to recognize issues in your body before it becomes a bigger problem. Learning how to listen to your body, understand your body’s needs will help you obtain a state of pure awareness. 

Final Thoughts 

In this state of pure consciousness, we are our true selves. In this state of liberation, all mental and philosophical constructs fall away. Yogic philosophy is essential for reaching enlightenment and deepening one’s practice of yoga.  

Your Healthy Life Philosophy

I believe the #1 reason we let our personal health slip, even when we know we shouldn’t, is a lack of a clear personal health philosophy. We create rules for ourselves with our relationships, in work, and many other aspects of our lives. But why don’t we do the same when it comes to our health?

Here’s what a healthy life philosophy is and some quick tips to help you create your very own!

What is a healthy life philosophy?

Essentially – a set of beliefs and rules that help you define what your healthy life looks like and stay on track with it.

Beliefs. It’s important for you to know what you believe in, when it comes to your health.

  • Do you believe that being healthy results in being happier?
  • Do you believe it is your responsibility to yourself and your friends and family to stay fit?
  • Do you believe that by being healthy you’ll have a better life?

Rules. A simple set of rules help us make decisions.

We tend to “cave” when our physical desires outweigh our cognitive power. In other words, it’s easier to eat a bag of chips when we’re tired and have a low amount of will power. But, when we feel good and are able to think clearly, it’s much easier for us to say no to unhealthy food.

Having a set of clear and simple rules helps me prevent having to think through many decisions, by making them already predefined as simple yes or no answers. Here are some examples:

  • Health Rule 1: I never drink more than 1 beer or cocktail per day. My exceptions are on family and friend’s birthdays and the 4th of July.
  • Health Rule 2: I get some form of exercise in every day; even on Sundays! The minimum form of exercise is a .5 mile walk or at least 20 minutes of sustained, dedicated cardio or strength training.
  • Health Rule 3: I journal about something related to my health every day, even if it’s just 1-2 sentences.

The Magic of Health Rules

Health rules can be very simple yet very powerful. In fact, being simple is what makes them powerful.

I recommend only starting with a few health rules at first, then you can add or adjust as needed. Here are a few explanations of my health rule examples:

  1. I made this rule for myself mainly because the empty calories of drinking add up and cause me to gain unwanted weight. What I also found, was that after more than one drink my decision making power decreases and I often continue to drink or eat something I regret the next day. On top of that, if I drink more than two drinks I’m almost guaranteed to get a hangover which means I’m less likely to be productive the following day. I’ll feel bad as a result and I’m more likely to eat bad foods. As you can tell, drinking can be a downward spiral for some people (like me). However, I do enjoy socializing and it can be hard not to have a drink with my peers. So, I limit it to one drink! I’ve found that, despite my fears, all of my friends have been supportive and some have even made a similar rule for themselves.
  2. This rule simply takes the “should I do xyz or should I not do xyz today?” off the table. I already know, no matter what, that I’m going to exercise. AND I actually plan my day around my exercise. That’s the first thing that goes in my calendar. I found that when I plan ahead I’m way more likely to fulfill it. To start this habit I even went as far as getting my clothes all laid out the night before so all I had to do when I woke up (I like to exercise early and feel that my main task for the day is complete) was put on my clothes and walk out the door. Notice that I didn’t set the bar too high for myself. The important thing here is that I build the habit of exercising every day, not that I burn a ton of calories or lift a bunch of weights. Pushing yourself comes naturally AFTER you get in the habit of daily exercise.
  3. Journaling simply keeps reminding me that my health is a priority. It also helps me track how far I’ve come – we often don’t notice this since we can’t see the small incremental changes each day. Looking back at previous journal entries I can see how I was feeling and how hard certain exercises were. Then I can see my recent entries where the same or similar exercises were done on my easy days. Writing and just putting in the time to think about our health on a daily basis forms a positive relationship with exercise and good health practices.

Creating Your Healthy Life Philosophy

You can create your healthy life philosophy by following this simple process:

  1. Brainstorm what your beliefs are about health
  2. Write down some ideas about what being healthy looks like and feels like for you
  3. Summarize your beliefs into a simple list or a personal mission statement
  4. Make a few simple rules for yourself to follow that are in line with your beliefs
  5. Take the smallest and simplest steps to start building habits that follow your rules and are in line with your beliefs

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