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Yoga Utsav

In today’s world of information overload, global travel and inter-planetary voyages, most people find it difficult to devote time towards their health and fitness. This has led to a drastic increase in health problems and related stress – the number one killer in modern days.
Unlike the early part of the century when death rate was primarily linked to illness and disease, today’s health problems are mostly related to life style. What spells disaster is the unhealthy mix of sedentary lifestyle, working indoor, sitting for long hours on the computer, eating out, erratic sleep pattern and poor posture, affecting spinal health.

The need of today is to strike the fine balance between work and life. These days everyone wants to be an achiever, which is justified as there is little room for the average. Work culture is on the lines of perform or perish. Consumerism is at an all time high. Desires are never-ending. Technology is advancing at an unprecedented pace. Gadgets become outdated even before one gets familiar with them.

So, how does one stay centered in this current day scenario? Yoga offers a method to this madness. It inculcates calmness, balance, harmony and stability; primarily because it is a mind-body exercise. Yoga postures are brilliantly designed to optimize the function of each organ, gland, hormone and enzyme. It is the only exercise which has both, external and internal focus. Besides the apparent physical changes like weight loss and body toning, it provides tremendous benefits on the physiological and psychological plane as well.

The practice of Asanas increases muscular strength, bone density, spinal health, blood nutrition, lung-function and oxygen carrying capacity. Other body parameters like cholesterol, sugar, blood pressure, cardiovascular performance also fall in order. This leads to overall fitness, higher energy, strength and vitality.

At the psychological level yoga sharpens the intellect, aids in concentration and steadies one’s emotions. It instills a feeling of well being due to reduced stress levels, greater mental clarity and understanding of the self.

In the realm of the spiritual, yoga heightens awareness and inculcates the ability to be still. Practicing Pranayam (breathing techniques) and meditation calms the mind and steadies the breath, which gradually progresses towards experiencing inner peace and awareness of the rhythm of life - a much needed element in today’s fast-paced existence.

Yoga is a practical philosophy, a way of life. It touches upon each aspect of a person’s being providing health to the body, knowledge to the mind and peace to the soul. It teaches the evolution of the individual by the development of self-discipline and self-awareness.

People of all ages can do yoga and it can also be adapted for people with disabilities or special needs. There are innumerable styles of yoga that can be practiced, so one can choose what is best suited for themselves. The essence of yoga is to make the process of life as efficient and enjoyable as possible. Therefore, it is never too late to begin.

Yoga is not merely a tool for physical fitness. Asanas are a part of the much broader concept of yoga. As the name suggests, it is the union of body, mind and spirit. It is about connecting us to ourselves, each other, our environment, and eventually, our truth.

Certified Yoga Teacher

Is Yoga is a tool to life?