Why I do Yoga – Health Benefits & Anxiety Relief

When I started university in 2013 I had recently lost a stone in weight and was on a health kick. My flatmate introduced me to yoga, as it was a form of exercise I hadn’t even considered.

I recently picked it up again, after stopping about a year ago, 4 times a week when I wake up and I honestly can’t understand why I ever stopped doing it in the first place. It was probably lack of motivation, not enough time around university and work, and/or I hadn’t fully realised how much doing yoga was benefitting me mentally and physically. I haven’t been back at it very long, but I have already seen some health benefits. 

I often have back pain from my horse riding accident in 2005, which hasn’t totally gone away even after having hydrotherapy and two courses of physio in my early teens. Since doing yoga I have found my back doesn’t ache quite so much. I still have to be careful picking up heavy things, hoovering, and working out on certain machines at the gym, but it doesn’t ache quite so much when I get into bed at the end of the day anymore. Yoga stretches my back out and as I do it almost daily I think it gets my back moving more than it usually would as I’m conscious of my injury.

As I said in a blog I posted earlier this week, my anxiety disorder got worse again last October. Last time I was under psychiatric care when I was still under 18, I did a mindfulness course. Although I found the course helpful, I have never really used it in daily life like I should. Doing yoga gives me a chance to totally clear my mind and concentrate on my body, which the course taught me is important for anxiety. It gives me a positive start to the day, which means I’m more motivated and relaxed for the rest of the day. Therefore I’m less likely to feel low or anxious.

Speaking of being more motivated, I also find doing yoga first thing in the morning gives me a good start to a healthy day. I don’t eat so much crap, I’m more likely to get up and out to do something, and it lifts my mood. It means I’m more productive and make healthier choices. Usually straight after yoga I grab a healthy breakfast such as scrambled eggs, cereal, or a smoothie. 

So in the week since I started doing yoga again, I’ve already noticed a huge difference in 3 areas of my life. I still don’t think I could do a yoga class, as I’ve already fallen over a good few times in my living room while doing it, but I’m happy to do it alone as it’s a nice bit of me time. I use the Yoga Studio app, which is fab for all abilities. 

I love doing yoga. I hope you find it benefits you too, as there are plenty of other health benefits to doing it. If you try it, let me know on social media. 


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