How Does Yoga Benefit Mental Health?

Yoga's positive benefits on mental health have made it an important practice tool of psychotherapy, as it releases stress, reduces muscle tension, sharpens attention, etc.

How Does Yoga Benefit Mental Health?
Yoga Benefit - Mental Health

There is a rise in the awareness of mental health issues like anxiety and depression. Therapists, psychologists and psychiatrists, all recommend that preventive measures and non-medicated treatments be tried before you attempt medication.

One of the most effective lifestyle changes you can implement is taking up yoga. Often, doctors will recommend that you try partaking in physical activities. They also recommend meditation and dietary changes. Yoga incorporates two of the above three in just one activity. The benefits of yoga for mental health are numerous, here are a few.

1. Calms the Mind

One of the main reasons doctors recommend yoga is because the poses incorporate intricate postures and breathing exercises which are known to calm your body and mind. Doing these poses will help prevent anxiety attacks or panic attacks which is are common mental health problems.

2. Helps Focus

Those who have disorders like ADHD are often asked to try yoga because it helps to relax and centre the body while helping the mind focus. ADHD is a disorder that directly affects focus and attention retention, doing poses that incorporate breathing techniques and promote focus can help.

3. Improves Your Mood

Physical exercises release healthy brain chemicals like endorphins and dopamine. This helps balance your mood and combat common mental health issues like depression. Therapists recommend yoga for mental peace and concentration and to improve your mood. This is an effective way to help manage bipolar disorder which pushes your mood to extremes.

4. Helps Build Confidence

Yoga can help those suffering from self-esteem issues, a loss in confidence or self-esteem is often considered a cause for depression and anxiety. Performing yoga regularly helps centre your body and develop it slowly. It improves your confidence. The breathing in yoga also helps rid your mind of self-doubt.

5. Improves Patience

A common side-effect of disorders like anxiety, depression and bipolar is a lack of patience. This leads to uncontrolled angry outbursts. Yoga incorporates numerous breathing activities known as pranayama which help clear your body and mind. Doing these exercises will improve your patience and sense of inner balance and help prevent angry outbursts.

5 Effective Yoga Poses to Improve Your Mental Health

Performing yoga poses with no focus on mental health will not help you, it is crucial to do the poses that are focused around the issues you have, here are 10 yoga asanas for mental health.

1. Anjaneyasana

This pose is also known as “the high lunge”. Doing the crescent variation of this exercise is known to help improve your blood flow, calm your mind.

2. Garudasana

This pose is known commonly as the eagle pose. This pose requires you to breathe while holding your body in balance. It helps prevent anxiety attacks while improving your focus.

3. Natarajasana

Commonly referred to as “the dancer’s pose”, this asana is great for mood balancing. It can be beneficial for those who are fighting depression and anxiety.

4. Virabhadrasana

Commonly referred to as “the warrior pose”, there are numerous variations to this exercise, all of which require focus and steady breathing. We are covering the basic warrior pose.

5. Padmasana

Another basic yoga pose, possibly the hardest one. This helps your digestion, spinal strength and improves calmness of the mind and also your mood. It helps keep your anxiety and depression at bay.