Celebrate health this year on International Day of Yoga

International Yoga Day is around the corner and it’s into the fifth year now. Once considered oriental, yoga has now reached every corner of the world. The number of people seeking yoga has increased exponentially in the past ten years and so recognising it UN declared June 21 as International Day of Yoga. Why is yoga popular? 

Yoga as a physical activity is unique as it combines, cardio, strength training, flexibility and most importantly stability and mental well-being through its varied spinal postures. It is quite easy to learn, extremely cost-effective and does not have any major side effects. Who can do yoga and when to start? Young or old, men or women, rich or poor, fast or slow-paced, adventurer or a couch potato, lazy or busy and stressed or a smiling person can do yoga. Yoga training can be started at any age, but should be done under a properly trained teacher so as to avoid any adverse effects. Yoga classes can be tailormade for individuals depending on their physical or mental state. How is it relevant in modern times? ‘No time’, is a common word these days for any activity in spite of advancement of technology making life easier for us. This is because there are too many things to do in a specified time period and people often suffer from lack of energy. The only way to reverse this is to increase energy levels to match our responsibilities and availability of time. Our body and mind both need recharging similar to phone batteries! In simple terms, Yoga is the best, easiest and cheapest charger available in modern times. How does it work? Yoga with its three components namely, the bodily postures (asanas), breathing exercises (pranayama) and mindfulness (meditation), helps in recharging one’s body and mind. The word yoga itself means uniting body mind and spirit. Once these are aligned then we immediately see an improvement in clarity, focus, productivity and overall well-being. Can yoga be used as a therapy? Yoga as a therapy is growing worldwide as an alternative to modern medicine for many chronic lifestyle related disorders and mental disorders too. Yoga can be used both for prevention and tackling diseases. Its holistic approach is unique. For example, for someone with heart disease, yoga looks beyond raised cholesterol levels or blood pressure. It examines the role of stress and its triggers; for example, the emotional components, especially in relationships and whether the person affected is living a life for a larger purpose or not – all of which can be a cause of the disease. This approach to treat the cause rather than symptoms helps to efficiently remedy the health problems as different areas are worked on simultaneously to balance all systems in the human body and mind.

Some of the health conditions improved by yoga include: anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorders, arthritis, back problems, heart diseases, diabetes, insomnia, hypertension, migraine, menstrual problems (premenstrual, menopausal or post-menopausal), obesity, neurological and neuromuscular problems and addictions like smoking and alcohol.

Hatat Polyclinic, Art of Living Foundation Oman under the Ministry of Sports Affairs will mark International Day of Yoga with a free event at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex, Bausher on June 18 from 8-10pm. There will be separate enclosures for women and children to perform yoga.

Those interested in registering can reserve a seat through https://www.artofliving.org/om-en/program/1559


(Contributed by: Art of Living Foundation Oman) 

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