6 Reasons Everyone Should Give Yoga a Chance

About a year and a half ago, I went to my first power yoga class with my best friend. Ever since, I’ve been addicted. I never thought I’d be the type of person to become addicted to yoga, but I love everything about it. Coming to college, I was shocked to meet so many people who have never gotten closer to yoga than a “gym bros and yoga hoes” party or a nearby Lululemon store. Both of which are fine, of course, but they do not compare to the amazing things yoga can do for you. Below are the six reasons everyone should give yoga a chance (or become an addict, like me).

1. Yoga will improve your overall fitness.

One thing I did not expect when I went to my first yoga class was that yoga is really, really hard. I’ve never been more physically challenged than I was at that first class. Yoga works your muscles in a way that other activities like cardio or lifting don’t. It requires both strength and flexibility, and you have to build them. Every class (or every time you practice on your own!) makes you stronger and more flexible, toning your body and improving your overall fitness.

2. Doing yoga, even once, helps create a better body image.

From what I gather, loads of college students struggle to maintain a good body image, and yoga can help with that! Your body can do awesome things, and yoga, even if you just do it once, really shows you how strong, powerful, and freaking incredible your body is. Also, yoga is all about turning your focus inward, which can help you become more satisfied with your body and less critical of it.

3. Practicing yoga is uplifting.

Remember what I said about body image? Likewise, focusing inward and searching for self improvement, and self acceptance, and seeing the amazing things your body can do is extremely uplifting! If you choose to attend yoga classes, I find this more uplifting because you are surrounded by a diverse group of people pushing themselves and improving, working towards a common goal. You can find inspiration in them and they will find inspiration in you.

4. Yoga is fun!

Movin’ and groovin’ and flexin’ and perplexin’ (yourself) is pretty darn fun! Depending what kind of yoga or yoga-inspired class you attend or practice you adopt, you might find yoga even more fun than dancing! How can you not like something that’s more fun than dancing?!

 

5. Yoga makes you more mindful.

Again, focusing inward encourages self-awareness, which can help you eat, work, and behave more mindfully. It can also teach you to be more mindful of others, making you more conscious of the feelings of others. This encourages you to let go of negativity not only during your practice but also when you leave the mat to live the rest of your life. Letting go of negativity is undeniably one of the best things you can do for yourselfnothing will dramatically change your life the way that positivity will.

6. Your health will thank you.

In case every other reason I have listed failed to convince you (although I don’t know how they could), this is a big one: yoga has TONS of health benefits. Yes, it improves your overall fitness, but practicing yoga regularly also wonders for your mental and physical health, including reducing the risk of memory loss, anxiety, depression, obesity, cancer, heart disease, back and hip injuries, high-blood pressure, and respiratory problems. It can also improve your sleep quality. Just try to tell me that doesn’t sound amazing.

 

Now, get off of your computer. Get on the floor. Downward dog. Let’s go.

 

Image Credit: Hannah Anain, Sara Elman, Deviantart