Yoga, originating from the Sanskrit word ‘yuj’ means "joining or integrating of all aspects of the individual—body with mind and mind with soul—to achieve a happy, balanced and useful life." There is no denying that a balanced life sounds like a luxury for us, especially now, living in an era of economic recession and an astronomical level of unemployment. The only way to survive is to keep up with the fast-going pace and multitask! For this reason, Yoga might be the most suitable choice for individuals trying to balance both the physical and mental aspects of their lives.
To balance your life, you need to balance the body first. One of the greatest health benefits Yoga offers is its ability to help the development of physical flexibility and strength which can put the body into a balanced state. Yoga asana allows you to stretch not only your muscles but all the tissues surrounding the muscle, including ligaments, tendons, and the fascia sheath. This releases the lactic acid that builds up with muscle use and causes stiffness, tension, pain, and fatigue, making Yoga the safest way to give your body a full stretch. Some types of yoga such as Iyengar or hatha focuses less on movement and more on precise alignment in poses, which can provide strength and endurance. With increased flexibility and strength comes better posture, which is the balance of the body.
Besides balance, Yoga also brings calmness, concentration and tranquility. Yoga requires you to focus on a specific part of the body, which is why you will often hear an instructor asking you to find your “focal point” during a yoga class. Almost every student would say they feel happier, more content and focused after the class. Even beginners tend to feel less stressed and more relaxed after their first class. Some yoga styles use specific meditation techniques to quiet the constant "mind chatter" that often underlies stress. So after a day’s rushing in and out, find a quiet place, a meditation mat, put on some Zen-like music and light up a relaxing aroma candle. Target your “focal point” and then stretch your whole body out. Let Yoga wash the stress and anxiety away!
Your Phix friends are also a zealous advocate of Yoga and an overall healthy lifestyle. We recently became one of the proud contributors for the 2011 Austin Yoga Festival which is going to kick off on October 8th and goes until the 9th. The two-day event will bring together Austin's finest yoga studios, teachers, Ayurveda practitioners, and holistic wellness providers to celebrate the traditions of Yoga. If you’ve already got the tickets, remember to check out your goodie bag as we have provided you with some amazing surprises. If not, visit AustinYogaFestival.com for more info. Be there or be square!
Enjoy Your Yoga Party,
Your friends at Phix