If you are not familiar with the practice of yoga, this is the year to introduce yourself. It is a physical and mental practice that focuses on your body’s natural tendency toward health and self-healing. “The purpose of yoga is to create strength, awareness and harmony in both the mind and body,” explains Natalie Nevins, DO, a board-certified osteopathic family physician and certified Kundalini Yoga instructor in Hollywood, California. Though there are many ways to practice yoga, the majority of classes will include breathing exercises, meditation, and assuming postures that stretch and flex various muscle groups.
This year, in addition to my resolution to maintain a positive outlook, I am making a point to learn (and try to perfect) a new yoga pose each month. The goal of this exercise is to keep my mind clear and focused on the bright side of life.
Benefits of yoga include:
Increased flexibility, muscle strength and tone, improved respiration, energy and vitality, weight reduction, improved cardio and circulatory health, and even weight reduction.
To start the year I plan to address my back and shoulders -- and through that improve my posture. The pose pictured above is one of many that will help open up your shoulders and improve mobility. Whether you are working at a computer or on your feet outdoors all day, working can lead to many back issues. Yoga is a wonderful way to combat these negative effects. Stayed tuned throughout the year for a segment on different yoga postures to improve your health and comfort with yourself in 2017. Feel free to comment below, if there is any particular part of the body you would like to focus on during this year of yoga!