The word Yoga comes from the sanskrit word” Yuj” meaning to yoke, join or unit. This implies joining or integrating all the aspects of individual-body with mind and mind with soul-to achieve happy, balanced and useful life, and spiritually, uniting the individual with the supreme. In India yoga is considered one of the six branches of classical philosophy and is referred to throughout the Vedas-ancient Indian scriptures and amongst oldest texts in existence.
Yoga is a science that has been practiced for thousands of years. It consists of ancient theories, observation and principles about the mind and body connection which is now being proven by modern medicine. Substantial research has been conducted to look at the health benefits of yoga-from the yoga posture(asanas), yoga breathing(pranayama) and meditation. The information on yoga poses and benefits are grouped into three categories-physiological, psychological, biochemical effect. Furthermore, scientists have laid results against the benefits of regular exercise.
With the practice, you are strengthening and calming the nervous system. You are increasing the blood flow to internal organs and bringing more oxygen to your cells. You are clearing the mental clutter that can wreck you life, allowing you to see things more clearly. You are cultivating the spiritual muscles in a way that can make you happier, less anxious, more at peace. Looking at it from definitions, the basic purpose of yoga is to make the mind fit for its best use. The mind is the man’s best friend and worst enemy. Yoga allows you to find an inner peace that is not ruffled and riled by the endless stresses and struggles of life.
Yoga is not some exercise alone. It is not just bending or twisting. Yoga is not some form of self torture like lying on bed of nails, burying one self underground etc. Neither is yoga a religious cult. Yoga has nothing to do with tricks, magic, psychic powers or gymnastics. Yoga is a spiritual Hindu practice that includes breath, a simple types of meditation and physical inclusion to merge both the body and mind and creating harmony. Yoga as therapy is that facet of the ancient science of yoga that focuses on health and wellness at all levels Initially introduced in the west in early 1900’s, by mid century yoga grew exponentially in popularity and continues to grow over few decades. To achieve and maintain the balance in life one must practice: exercise, breathing, and mediation-the three main yoga structures which makes your life stress free and peaceful.