FROM OUR BLOG
Not only does yoga improve flexibility, it helps us relax and use muscles we never thought possible. With help from Yoga Journal, here is a list of some more ways yoga can benefit you. Don’t be afraid to come in and try a class, we have fabulous instructors who are willing to help you find your inner yogi.
1. Improves your flexibility
Improved flexibility is one of the first and most obvious benefits of yoga. During your first class, you probably won’t be able to touch your toes, never mind do a backbend. But if you stick with it, you’ll notice a gradual loosening, and eventually, seemingly impossible poses will become possible. You’ll also probably notice that aches and pains start to disappear. That’s no coincidence. Tight hips can strain the knee joint due to improper alignment of the thigh and shinbones. Tight hamstrings can lead to a flattening of the lumbar spine, which can cause back pain. And inflexibility in muscles and connective tissue, such as fascia and ligaments, can cause poor posture.
2. Builds muscle strength
Strong muscles do more than look good. They also protect us from conditions like arthritis and back pain, and help prevent falls in elderly people. And when you build strength through yoga, you balance it with flexibility. If you just went to the gym and lifted weights, you might build strength at the expense of flexibility.
3. Perfects your posture
Your head is like a bowling ball—big, round, and heavy. When it’s balanced directly over an erect spine, it takes much less work for your neck and back muscles to support it. Move it several inches forward, however, and you start to strain those muscles. Hold up that forward-leaning bowling ball for eight or 12 hours a day and it’s no wonder you’re tired. And fatigue might not be your only problem. Poor posturecan cause back, neck, and other muscle and joint problems. As you slump, your body may compensate by flattening the normal inward curves in your neck and lower back. This can cause pain and degenerative arthritis of the spine.
4. Prevents cartilage and joint breakdown
Each time you practice yoga, you take your joints through their full range of motion. This can help prevent degenerative arthritis or mitigate disability by “squeezing and soaking” areas of cartilage that normally aren’t used. Joint cartilage is like a sponge; it receives fresh nutrients only when its fluid is squeezed out and a new supply can be soaked up. Without proper sustenance, neglected areas of cartilage can eventually wear out, exposing the underlying bone like worn-out brake pads.
For more health benefits of yoga, click here.
Staying Away From Gym Injuries
Everyone has fitness goals and the one sure thing to get in the way is an injury. Here are some of the more common workout injuries and some basic guidelines to get you back training safely and quickly.
First off for everyone injury apply the R.I.C.E. principle for the first 48 hours. That is Rest Ice Compression and Elevation. The most important of these is REST. NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and naproxen can also help with pain and swelling.
Two of the more common reasons for injuries at the gym are poor form and to much to fast. Start light and use proper form when lifting weights, if you don’t know the best thing to do is ask a personal trainer with some help. Know your own body. Don’t push yourself to hard at first listen to your body and know your limits. And most of all always check with your health care professional before starting an exercise program.
Sprain: Sprains can occur to any ligament in the body. Most commonly experienced at the ankle joint. A sprain is a stretch or tear of a ligament, the fibrous tissue that connects bone to bone. Ligaments stabilize and support the body’s joints.
If you experience a sprain it is best to splint and ice the inflamed joint and seek a health care professional for further instruction.
Strains: A strain is an injury of the muscle and or tendon of the body. Tendons are fibrous cords of tissue that attach muscles to bone. Strains commonly occur due to a lack of a proper warm up, overuse of a muscle due to lack of rest, over stretching of the muscle or excessive muscle contraction. Depending on the severity of the strained muscle rest is typically your best option. If the strain in more severe you made want to see your health care professional.
Stress Fractures: Stress fractures are tiny cracks in a bone caused by repetitive application of force such as running or jumping. Most commonly found in the lower leg of distance runners but may also be the result of doing too much too soon. Pain associated with a stress fracture originates in a specific spot and decreases during rest. Contact your doctor if your pain becomes severe or persists even at rest.
Stay clear of these common side lining injuries so you can stay health and reach your fitness goals.
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