Yoga for Mental Health: What You Should Know
Updated: Mar 21
There is an undeniable link between your mental and physical health, so it’s no wonder that yoga is a great tool at reducing the effects of many mental illnesses. Read on to learn about how yoga can benefit your mental health, whether as a supplement to other mental care or on its own.
What to Know About Yoga for Mental Health
Yoga Isn’t a Cure
Yoga is a great way to practice mindfulness, but it’s more than just a way to calm down and de-stress. Studies have found links between yoga and improving mental illness. It’s not pseudoscience or an impenetrably complicated belief system that calls for you to change your every perception of the world. There are so many different levels to yoga, and your comfort level is all that matters to a yoga trainer focused on mental health. While yoga can help with a variety of issues ranging from anxiety to post-traumatic stress disorder, it is not a cure for mental illness. Yoga is an excellent addition to more traditional therapies or psychiatry, and it definitely works best when you’re working toward betterment on multiple fronts. But yoga can help on its own. For people who struggle with remaining focused, general stress from life, or trouble sleeping, yoga can be enough to deliver all the improvement you need.
You Can Learn Yoga
You may worry that you’ll be driving to yoga classes and sessions for as long as you’re practicing yoga, but that isn’t the case. Yoga is an incredibly versatile physical activity that doesn’t require any additional equipment for most poses. You may benefit from learning in person at first, but that doesn’t mean you’re reliant on an instructor forever. Yoga poses, mindfulness practices, and breathing strategies are all things you can take home with you. Additionally, you can always do video yoga, whether with a live instructor or a pre-recorded, guided session.This is especially useful right now, when COVID numbers have everyone a little on edge as it is. It’s important to understand that yoga isn’t a hard thing to learn. It’s hard to master, sure, and there’s always room for improvement, but it can be as self-guided or as regimented as you need it. It depends on your needs, and a mental health specialist training you in yoga will learn and adapt to those needs – just as you will learn more and more about yoga and mindfulness.
Group Up for Even More Benefits
Yoga groups are very common. When coupled with a mental health focus, they’re incredibly useful to many people. They can be very specific. You can probably find yoga sessions for other people with anxiety, depression, PTSD, or bipolar disorder, just to name a few conditions. Group yoga for mental health can help foster a sense of community and build trust in other people. It can help you overcome social anxiety and self-esteem issues. It may feel strange to do these emotional and physical exercises surrounded by others at first, but if you stick it out past the awkward first introductions, group yoga can be incredibly beneficial.
Your mental health is tied to your physical wellbeing, and yoga is powerful evidence supporting this claim. Interested in learning more about yoga for mental health and finding a session near you? Give us a call at The Collective today, and get started on your journey.