Yoga is an ancient system, which originated in India, but with complete relevance to our contemporary world. Yoga seeks to bring about physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing through a series of practices including:
Asanas / postures
This system of physical exercises rejuvenates the whole body by working on the spine and central nervous system. Circulation is stimulated, bringing an increased flow of oxygen and nutrients to the cells of the body. The asanas increase flexibility by gentle stretching / contraction followed by relaxation of the muscles, strength & balance are improved and, over time, visible changes can be seen in the posture.
Pranayama / breathing exercises
Simple breathing exercises stimulate the energy reserves in the solar plexus, and give a gentle cleanse to the entire respiratory system. Pranayama also helps improve lung capacity and calms the nervous system.
Often in our daily lives, the body and mind are constantly over-worked, and we find it difficult to switch off. Practising deep relaxation at the end of a Yoga session is a natural way for the system to fully recharge. Relaxation between each posture is also important for the body to neutralise, absorb the effects of the previous position and prepare itself for the next.
Regular practice of meditation is known to reduce the effects of stress; improve concentration and contribute to lowering blood pressure. It is an opportunity to create a space for quiet reflection in our busy lives. Over time, this leads to greater peace of mind and an ability to live more in the present moment.