What is yoga?

Yoga is an ancient form of exercise that focuses on strength, flexibility and breathing to boost physical and mental health. The main components of yoga are breathing and postures (a series of movements designed to increase strength and flexibility). Yoga originated in India about 5,000 years ago, and has been adapted in other countries in a variety of ways. Yoga is now popular in many leisure centres, health clubs, schools, hospitals and surgeries.

Does Yoga Have Health Benefits?

Scientific studies of varying quality have been published on yoga. Most studies suggest yoga is a safe and effective way to increase physical activity, especially flexibility, strength, and balance. There's some evidence that regular yoga practice is beneficial for people with:

  • high blood pressure
  • heart disease
  • aches and pains – including lower back pain
  • depression and stress

Can yoga help prevent falls?

YES!! Yoga helps by strengthening your lower body, including your ankles and knees. Thereby reducing your chances of a fall. However, sometimes falls may be caused by a health condition, if this is your case, it is adivsed that you see your GP.

Can yoga help with arthritis?

Yoga is popular with people with arthritis because of the way it promotes flexibility and strength. Some research suggests yoga can reduce pain and increase mobility in people with osteoarthritis. However, some yoga moves and positions aren't suitable for people with the condition. It is also advised to check with a doctor or physiotherapist to find out if there are any movements to avoid.

Am I too old for yoga?

NO!! People often start yoga at an older age, and many say they wish they had started sooner. There are yoga classes for every age group. Yoga is a form of exercise that can be enjoyed from childhood to your advanced years.

Do I have to be fit to do yoga?

NO!! Anyone can join a class that is suitable for their own fitness level. For example, to join a mixed ability yoga class, you would need to be able to get up and down from the floor. Howevere, some yoga classes are chair-based.

Do I need to be flexible to do yoga?

NO!! With after a few lessons of yoga, you will notice an improved flexibility and you will be able to go beyond your normal range of movement, which may make performing your daily activities easier.

Can I injure myself doing yoga?

Yes you can injure yourself. However, Yoga-related injuries are uncommon. Some injuries can be caused by overstretching or repetitive strain. But yoga is the same as any other forms of exercise. It is perfectly safe if taught properly by people who understand it and have experience. Learning from a qualified yoga teacher and choosing a class appropriate for your level will ensure you remain injury-free.