What Is Yoga Meditation Anyway? A Complete Guide

what is yoga meditation

What Is Yoga Meditation?

Healthy Preview’s Complete Guide To Yoga

Long before it was hip, yoga has been the go-to exercise for many people seeking a workout that is effective, yet meditational as well.

What many people may not know about yoga is that it is very old and some folks are astonished to find that yoga has been in existence for more than 5,000 years.

There are many reasons to try yoga whether they be for fat loss, muscle toning, flexibility or balance. Because of its amazing versatility, it has a popularity that genuinely exceeds its trendy appeal.

 

posing for yoga

The Changing Face Of Yoga In The Modern World

New Additions

Several yoga teachers have added their own poses and moves to basic Yoga to the point that today there are numerous styles of Yoga.

No matter how many styles there are they have similarities to the basic yoga practice.

Many new practitioners become confused by the numerous yoga styles because experienced followers of Yoga believe that their form of this activity is the original Yoga or the best style.

It may be just too hard to trace the original movements of early yogis.

Are The New Moves Just As Effective?

There’s no real evidence to suggest they are not as long as they’re done properly.

Yoga has been around long enough that most of what is effective has been well and truly developed by now.  That isn’t at to say that things cannot be improved, but hype plays a role in some modern yoga marketing and that should be at least viewed with caution for the discerning consumer.

What Can Be Learned Here?

Most yoga follows similar practices, though, there are newer types that are not necessarily better.

 

new exercises

What Is Yoga?

Meditation Or Exercise?

This is the most common question asked especially from new students. Most people have a vague idea of what Yoga is about.

Some ask if Yoga is an exercise, others believe that Yoga is a philosophy. Many think it is physical therapy or a spiritual practice. All of these questions can be answered “Yes.” Yoga is a part of all of these things.

Yoga can be described as a discipline of low-impact static exercises and poses that work together to strengthen and increase flexibility. Because of its low-impact nature, many people who cannot perform more intense workouts, find they enjoy being able to exercise again using yoga.

As Yoga poses stretch parts of the body, the body parts experience an increase in blood flow and many people claim to experience a release of energy, though there’s little scientific evidence to support this as a biological fact.

Tension is released from certain parts of the body where it is never given the opportunity to be released through regular activities.

Though you won’t burn fat like you would doing HIIT training or plyometrics, the fact is not everyone who participates in yoga-related activities is looking for this kind of weight loss or physical improvement.

Mental and spiritual elements are also believed to be enhanced because of the slow movements and correct breathing used during Yoga exercises.
Yoga enthusiasts believe that not only is the body strengthened but the mind and spirit benefit as well.

Though some of the claims of spirituality lack grounding in science, there are many physical benefits that can be proven effective such as increased flexibility, circulation and breathing.

Flexibility can help prevent muscle strains and improve agility at all ages.

It’s also well worth noting that the positive effects that exercise can have on the brain through endorphin release could go some way to explain some of the spiritual claims.

So, What’s Definitive?

It’s definitely an exercise, but to many people, it is a calming and philosophical activity.

 

yogi - religious

Do You Need To Be A Religious Person In Order To Practice Yoga?

Is Spirituality A Requirement?

Yoga is many things to many people as discussed above. Some people practice Yoga for its spiritual benefits alone. Others perform Yoga for its physical benefits of strengthening and flexibility.

Since Yoga has benefits for the mind, body and “spirit”, staying open to all of its benefits can be a major benefit for all areas of life.

Far be it for a science-based health website to lay claim to all the answers.

You might find that yoga is a good place to start developing the spiritual part of you if you’ve never explored this part of your life.

Yoga is an excellent way to increase a feeling of peace and self-confidence, but there’s no reason a person has to be “spiritual” to enjoy many of the benefits.  Many people use the meditative qualities of yoga to help control their anger as well as to calm their mind and find a relaxing balance.

What’s The Bottom Line?

You Can Enjoy Yoga Whether You’re Spiritually Inclined Or Not.

 

park yoga

Where Can You Practice Yoga?

Do You Have To Go To A Class?

You can practice Yoga anywhere.

People practice Yoga in the privacy of their homes. Others love sharing their Yoga time with friends in an outdoor setting such as a park or the beach.

Inquire about Yoga classes at a gym near you. A class is one of the best ways to start the practice and learn the correct exercises, poses and breathing.

Some community-based organizations teach free Yoga classes to anyone who wants to learn. One advantage to learning Yoga is there is no equipment necessary.

That alone saves money and space. You may want to use a pillow to support the body during some poses, but that is all the equipment needed.

There’s a yoga directory that lists many different studios and practitioners all over the world here: Yoga Directory

There are videos on youtube of yoga activities you can learn if you’re too shy to brave a class, but it can be a social activity if you get among other enthusiasts.

So, Can You Do It Where Ever You Like?

Absolutely. A yoga mat and clothing are optional.

 

overweight person

What If I Am Overweight & Unfit. Can I Still Practice Yoga?

Is This A Problem?

Yes, you can. Yoga poses and exercises range from very easy to more advanced levels. You will gradually become strong and flexible enough to advance from very easy moves to the more complex moves.

The slow and static movements of Yoga can be easily practiced by nearly everyone from preschoolers to senior citizens.

One of the best things about yoga is its low impact and ease with which most people can access this unique activity. Many people claim they experience a positive mindset after performing certain yoga techniques, which could benefit anyone of any size or age.

As with any exercise, larger people may have some difficulty trying to accomplish some maneuvres and moves, but some yoga exercises require you to only lay on your back and really are quite simple.

So, Can Most People Do Yoga?

Barring some disabilities, most people are able to participate in some form of yoga.

 

Yoga Tree

In Conclusion

What is Yoga Meditation Anyway?

Now that you understand Yoga better you may just agree that Yoga is something you may want to explore further.

It is a mental, physical and spiritual practice that can be done anywhere and as much as you like. This makes Yoga one of the most popular disciplines in the world.

 

We hoped you thoroughly enjoyed this article “What Is Yoga Meditation Anyway?”.  Please visit the appropriate medical authority before undertaking any exercise regime.

About the author

S James

6 comments
yoga Bear - November 6, 2017

I love yoga, it’s a great relaxer but I still get sore joints. Do you think it would be a good idea if I keep doing it. I have lost about 3 pounds this month from doing yoga exercises 4 times per week.

Reply
somaj - November 22, 2017

I have done yoga in Central Park and that was my highlight of my trip to New York. Beautiful scenery and a relaxed environment.

Reply
tulia-may - November 27, 2017

I did hot yoga for the first time this morning and it was AMAZING! It was called hog yoga meditation and right now im buzzing.

Reply
    Poppyj - December 19, 2017

    Ooh. Hot yoga looks a bit hard for my liking. All that sweat.

    Reply
Felice - April 12, 2018

I love my yoga group. It’s social and fun. I don’t go for weight loss, but I’ve lost 12 pounds in the last couple of months.

Reply
>>>Southsider - April 14, 2018

I’ve been thinking of trying meditation and yoga for a long time now. Wondering if it’s expensive because once things become trendy they tend to get overpriced.

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