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Saturday
Jan072012

Happy New Year!


A gentle reminder that my yoga, meditation and kirtan classes start back next week (week commencing 9th January).  Please use our online booking system to reserve a space Yoga Barn bookings

I've also introduced a loyalty card for my hatha yoga and meditation classes where you can receive a free class of your choice or yoga mat.

I'm looking to include a testimonial page on the website so if you have any words (positive ones hopefully!) you would like me to add then please email me with them.  Just a few sentences would be great!

A huge thanks to all of you for coming to the Barn and making it such a lovely space to practice all the different aspects of yoga.

Look forward to seeing you soon, Namaste, Tracey xx

 

The Yoga Barn

10 reasons to do yoga

 

1.            One of the most obvious benefits of yoga is improved flexibility and posture. If you stick with it, you’ll notice a steady improvement as your muscles lengthen. And you may find that general aches and pains start to lessen: for instance, tight hips can overstrain your knee joints and tight hamstrings can cause lower back pain.

 

2.             Yoga offers us the opportunity to take joints through their full range of motion. And the health of joint capsules can be optimized by movement. Half of people over 60 will have a significant degree of osteoarthritis, and can benefit from a regular yoga practice.

 

3.             Weight-bearing exercise can help to strengthen bones and help to prevent osteoporosis. About half of post-menopausal women are at high risk from osteoporosis. Yoga poses such as down-facing-dog can help to strengthen arm bones, which are particularly vulnerable to osteoporotic fractures. Yoga practice may also help to increase bone density in the vertebrae.

 

4.             The intervertebral discs (that sit between each vertebrae and its neighbour in the spine) are believed to receive nutrients through the compression and release created by movement. A well-balanced yoga practice with plenty of backbends, forward bends, and twists will help to keep your intervertebral discs supple.

 

5.             Yoga can help improve circulation and get the blood flowing around your body. Twisting poses are believed to help squeeze out venous blood from internal organs, allowing fresh oxygenated blood to flow in once the twist is released. Inverted postures, such as shoulderstand, encourage venous blood from the legs and pelvis to flow back to the heart, where it can be pumped to the lungs to be freshly oxygenated. And the breathing exercises – pranayama – that are part of yoga classes help to get more oxygen to your cells, which function better as a result.

 

6.             When you contract and stretch muscles in yoga postures (as well as when you move into and out of them), you increase the drainage of lymph (a viscous fluid rich in immune cells). This helps the lymphatic system fight infection, destroy cancerous cells, and dispose of the toxic waste products of cellular functioning.

 

7.             The medical journal The Lancet, published two studies comparing the effects of Savasana (a relaxation pose, where you lie on your back) with those gained by simply lying on a sofa. After three months, Savasana was associated with a 26-point drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number) and a 15-point drop in diastolic blood pressure (the bottom number). The study found that the higher the initial blood pressure, the bigger the drop experienced, So - if you've got high blood pressure, you might benefit from yoga.


8.             Vigorous types of flowing yoga, such as astanga yoga, can boost your heart rate into the aerobic range. And regular aerobic exercise can lower your risk of heart attack and relieve depression. Even yoga exercises that don't get your heart rate up that high can potentially improve cardiovascular conditioning. Studies have found that yoga practice lowers the resting heart rate, increases endurance, and can improve your maximum uptake of oxygen during exercise.

 

9.             Many conditions - such as irritable bowel syndrome, ulcers, constipation – can be exacerbated by stress. Most yoga classes will finish with a relaxation session, giving you precious time to switch off and unwind. And all forms of physical exercise, including yoga, can help to ease constipation  - theoretically lowering the risk of colon cancer—because moving the body helps to move food and waste products through the bowels.

 

10.             Some studies suggest another by-product of a regular yoga practice is better sleep – and that means you'll be less tired and stressed and less likely to have accidents.

 

 

And 5 good reasons to meditate

 

1.             People who practice meditation have been shown to problem solve more effectively, as well as acquire and recall information better. And that is probably because they are less distracted by their thoughts. Other studies have found that regular yoga practice (including meditation) can improve coordination, reaction time, memory, and even IQ scores.

 

2.             Feeling blue? At the University of Wisconsin, Richard Davidson, Ph.D., found that the left prefrontal cortex showed heightened activity in meditators. And that has been correlated with greater levels of happiness and better immune function.

 

3.             Meditation appears to have a beneficial effect on the functioning of the immune system, by boosting it when needed (for example, raising antibody levels in response to a vaccine) and also lowering it when needed (for instance, mitigating an inappropriately aggressive immune function in an autoimmune disease like psoriasis).

 

4.             Stimulation can be a good thing, but too much of it can tax your the nervous system. Meditation and yoga encourages you to relax, slow your breath, and focus on the present. All these things help to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, lowering breathing and heart rates, decreases blood pressure, and increases blood flow to the intestines and reproductive organs.

 

5.              According to several studies, yoga, meditation, (or a combination of the two), can help to reduce the pain associated with arthritis, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, as well other chronic conditions. And that means you’re more likely to stay active, happier and – possibly-  need less medication.

 

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