Tuesday, 26 January 2021

Hatha Yoga and Relaxation

 Hatha Yoga

Hatha yoga is a gentle introduction to yoga poses and movement. Its a great place to start for yoga practices and flexibility. You may not work up a sweat during a Hatha yoga session but you will definitely feel longer, looser, more mobile and certainly more relaxed.

Hatha yoga focuses on the pairing of yoga poses 'asanas' and breathing techniques 'pranayama' creating mind and body harmony. As a beginner to yoga you can expect a synchronised practice full of static poses, mindful breathing and a manageable pace. To begin your understanding of Hatha, you will practice postures and alignment alongside the strengthening and promotion of mobility and flexibility within the body. Breathing techniques, mindfulness and meditation are also integrated with yoga poses. Expect an emphasis on simplicity, repetition and ease of movement. Whilst you begin your Hatha yoga journey you will have an opportunity to work on your alignment and balance, focus on breathing and being in the present moment and learn new relaxation techniques. You will become comfortable with yoga poses while building strength and flexibility. 

The Benefits of Hatha Yoga

Hatha Yoga is the practice of yoga poses or 'asana' for achieving self-transformation. These poses consist of bending, twisting, balancing and squeezing your body. It is designed to promote calmness of mind, spirit, body and beneficial for overall health and well-being. There are numerous benefits associated with Hatha yoga:

  • Improved core strength: The core is the centre of the body including abs, hips and spine. A strong core eliminates back pain, improves flexibility and endurance and strengthens the spine to improve your ability to twist and bend
  • Improved bone density: Low bone density can cause early fractures, arthritis and osteoporosis. Whilst it is true that a healthy diet rich in nutrients will help maintain bone density, Hatha yoga is beneficial in treating bone loss and promotes bone density. Hatha can increase coordination and balance, decreasing the chances of a fall, the major cause of osteoporotic fractures.
  • Heart Health: Hatha yoga promotes deep breathing and calm, therefore reducing the occurrence of hypertension, one of the leading causes of heart health. Certain Hatha poses enhance lung capacity and strengthen respiratory function. 
  • Healthy and glowing skin: 
    1. By releasing stress the major cause of premature wrinkling
    2. Boost blood flow to help improve dull and tired complexion
    3. Flushes out toxins to prevent acne outbreaks and pimples
    4. Tightens facial skin to prevent sagging facial muscles
    5. Boosting blood circulation to provide skin with nutrients and a glowing complexion
  • Strengthens the immune system: Hatha supports the lymphatic system protecting the body from disease and infection. By lower stress levels it removes the negativity that affects the immune system.

Mindfulness and Hatha Yoga

The benefits of mindfulness - bringing your awareness to the present moment, of noticing and accepting what is happening right now without judgement or reaction. Mindfulness is something that the Buddhist meditators cultivate and it is something that all styles of Hatha yoga teach, often through the emphasis on breathing awareness. Practising mindful meditation and Hatha yoga for 25 minutes a day can improve energy levels, focus, performance and sleep. Hatha yoga incorporates breathing exercises and mindful meditation into it's practices of physical poses, which improve strength, flexibility and reduce back pain. This concludes Hatha yoga will give more benefits than just practising mindful breathing or meditation alone. This is a positive way to relax and de-stress after a hard day at the office rather than spending 25 minutes scrolling through social media.


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