Yoga is one of the most popular forms of exercise in the world, with more than 300 million people around the world participating in the fitness activity according to the International Yoga Federation. In fact, in the U.S. it’s one of the most popular forms of anaerobic exercise, particularly among women. Enthusiasts often turn to yoga for a low-impact form of exercise that improves health, flexibility, strength, alignment, and posture.
Increasingly, people are turning to yoga as a way to prevent and recover from injury for the following reasons:
Improved balance – Yoga helps balance and improves proprioception which can help prevent injury by enhancing the awareness of your body’s movements in space.
Physicality – Yoga strengthens and lengthens muscle tissue and improves range of motion by applying low impact pressure. This is especially helpful for recovery from overuse injuries.
Healing hormones – Yoga reduces the stress hormone, cortisol, which is linked to a number of adverse effects that inhibit injury recovery.
Pain management – Yoga focuses on both the mind and the body and helps address and overcome both physical and nonphysical injury recovery.
Slowing down – The art of yoga, which encompasses moving slowly with each breath, encourages slower, more deliberate movement because you are only moving as fast as you are breathing.
Versatility – Different forms of yoga offer varying levels of intensity, from static stretching to more vigorous styles, based on your injury or recovery plan.
Mental recovery – Along with supporting physical recovery, yoga improves mental and emotional wellness, which is an added benefit.
Yoga provides a low-impact option for maintaining fitness and can also complement an injury recovery plan. Of course, if you are injured, consult with your doctor before starting any exercise program.
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