a woman on a yoga matIf you are interested in working out, you have probably had at least one person suggest that you give yoga a try. While it is a great addition to any workout routine, the benefits of yoga extend well beyond merely getting into shape.

You might be under the mistaken impression that you must contort your body into complex positions during yoga. Though it is true that many people have achieved this, you should not make their achievements your goals and is actually not necessary to benefit from the practice of yoga. Rather, you need to focus on getting to know your own body, mind, and spirit.

These three aspects of your being are interconnected, whether you realize it or not. By learning how to breathe and execute basic yoga positions with precision, you will be creating your own path of success. Remember that it is about the journey, not some far off imagined destination that will never arrive. With regular practice, you will be able to receive a multitude of health benefits for your body as well as a more balanced peace of mind and calmer spirit over time.

Though westerners often see yoga as a single practice, there are actually many different forms of the practice. Some focus more on a particular aspect, such as deep meditation while others concentrate more on the power styles such as Ashtanga yoga. However, Hatha yoga is one of the most commonly used in this country right now.

No matter what type of yoga you opt for, you will experience greater strength and flexibility from regular practice. Some beginner poses may look simple, but if you take the time to really feel your body and breathe into it, you will experience a new awareness that can be quite profound. Child’s Pose is one such example of this.

a woman on the beach doing yoga

You might also be surprised to learn that many yoga routines provide a good cardiovascular workout as well. Pay attention to your body and you will learn to feel how each motion and pose flows through your body. It is a very enjoyable and invigorating experience.

As mentioned earlier, yoga can also help with your mental and spiritual health. Mentally, you will gain greater control over your thoughts and learn how to focus your mind. For those who have rampant thoughts popping through their head all day, this can be an incredibly freeing practice and is one of the primary benefits of yoga. As such, regular yoga is excellent for people suffering from high levels of stress, anxiety, and depression.

Spiritually, yoga practice allows you to tap into your own innate spirit and how it is interconnected with every living being on the planet. Greater peace and humility can result from this profound experience.

Though you might have been looking into a way to exercise your body, yoga provides an even better experience by addressing your whole being. Dedicate yourself to at least five minutes per day and feel yourself begin to transform as a result! Naturally, you will want to start to do more over time once you see and feel the benefits for yourself.