Yoga meditation can have long lasting benefits to those who practice it consistently. There are many studies that tout the benefits of Yoga. The following is an excerpt froma scientific study conducted at UCLA. They found that Yoga meditation helps strengthen the brain and process information faster.
Eileen Luders, an assistant professor at the UCLA Laboratory of Neuro Imaging, and colleagues, have found that long-term meditators have larger amounts of gyrification (“folding” of the cortex, which may allow the brain to process information faster) than people who do not meditate. Further, a direct correlation was found between the amount of gyrification and the number of meditation years, possibly providing further proof of the brain’s neuroplasticity, or ability to adapt to environmental changes.
Watch all 26 Bikram Yoga Poses in under 3 minutes. This video demonstrates a Bikram Yoga class in action. You will see how each poses is performed. Obviously, a full class would last 90 minutes. This is just a snap shot of the Bikram Yoga Poses.
I like the energy of the class. Of course I am partial to Bikram yoga.
Morning Yoga class at Parmarth Niketan, Muni Ki Reti, Rishikesh. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Michelle Mitchelle has been Teaching Yoga to Children for several years. She has taught yoga to children of many diverse backgrounds, and it has gotten positive results. This is truly a win-win for the children as well as their parents.
It probably is, but I think they took the idea from watching kids. Babies practice yoga naturally. As we grow older we need an adult reminding us how to continue or to come back to our yoga practice that we so easily shift away from.
Yoga used to be practiced to prepare the body for meditation. What is it you are teaching kids? Is there anything spiritual about your teaching, or is it strictly about stretching and breathing?
I’ve worked with children from homes that vary in religious and spiritual beliefs. It’s not something that we talk about or is even relevant for participation in the yoga class. There’s the overarching goal, which is to get the kids to settle their minds into stillness. I’ve learned to provide an opportunity for that in every class. I try to tire out their bodies physically so they are comfortable being still at the end of class. If they fall into a meditative state, the environment is there to support that. If they are just quiet and resting, the environment of the class is able to support that, too.
My experience has taught me that parents want to be aware of activities their children are participating in and have a voice of approval for these activities. Occasionally, and for a variety of reasons, parents ask us a lot of questions about what it is that we are doing in our classes, and every once in awhile a parent will prefer their child not have a yoga class, without asking questions and understanding what we are doing. I encourage parents, such as the ones at the Encinitas Union School District in California, not to worry. However, I can appreciate the desire for an opt-out clause. School yoga is not about promoting Hinduism or any religious system of beliefs and practices.
Yoga works and I believe that what Michelle is doing is admirable. Teaching Yoga to children is something that should be a common occurrence as it promotes self-discipline and positive behavior.
Mindfullness Meditation is becoming very popular these days. In fact not only is it commonly accepted, but it is now being encouraged by many Fortune 500 corporations and governmental agencies. Why? Because it works.
The benefits of mindfullness meditation are many. It is generally believed that this type of meditation helps
boost our immune system, control our emotions and allows us to obtain a higher degree of spirituality.
Hari Kaur, an accomplished author and Yoga Kundalini instructor explains it this way:
Meditation is both a conscious act and a refinement of what is possible with our brains and our minds and bodies. We have figured out about every possible way to exercise; the next frontier is our minds. There will be a movement towards meditation that will include the simplest to the most complex ways of ‘getting the most’ from our brains. The way we might get the most from our brains so we can handle the technological era is to meditate to become still – to dump our subconscious burden, to learn to light up the happy hormones and experience the balance to this existence.”
Far from being a fringe pastime, meditation is being used by a large cross section of society. The United States Marines have introduced a program called Mindfulness-based Mind Fitness Training (or “M-Fit”), which trains soldiers in mindfulness and meditation in order to improve mental performance and emotional health during combat situations. “Mindful Leadership” is an initiative at General Mills that mixes sitting meditation, yoga and mindfulness practices to settle and focus the mind. Google, Target and Aetna all have similar programs.
I am so impressed that Fortune 500 companies are now encouraging their employees to practice mindfullness meditation. They definitely see the benefits it can bring to the individual as well as their organization.
Yoga meditation is one of the most important things we can do. It will help us achieve a state of relaxation that will last throughout the day. It will provide the presence of mind as we perform our yoga routine.
Not only will yoga meditation help us relax but it will enhance our memory and concentration.
In this video Sarah Beth demonstrates a sequence of Yoga Poses for Flexibility that you can practice every day at home. These poses are great for beginners. If you practice the sequence daily you will gradually become more flexible and stronger.
The key to flexibility is to practice the sequence regularly. Follow along and you will see and feel the improvement.
When you are just starting out some yoga positions can seem overwhelming. But Yoga Beginning Poses are typically much easier to perform and are gentler on your body. The video below will demonstrate Yoga Poses for complete beginners. In this gentle series of yoga poses, you will learn how to breathe properly as well as how to execute the poses in a graceful and deliberate manner.
These poses are presented in an artful and gentle manner so that most beginners will be able to follow along from home.
Can yoga really help you lose weight? We have all heard about the spiritual side of yoga. We know that if we perform yoga on a regular basis, we will become more flexible and more aligned with our inner self. But losing weight is something that many people associate with sports that are more cardio- intensive.
n 2005 Alan Kristal, who is a medical doctor and practicing yogi developed a study on the weight-loss effects of yoga.
With funding from the National Cancer Institute, Kristal and colleagues at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle led a trial involving 15,500 healthy, middle-aged men and women. All completed a survey recalling their physical activity (including yoga) and their weight between the ages of 45 and 55. Researchers then analyzed the data, teasing out other factors that could influence weight change – such as diet or other forms of exercise.
The end result: They found yoga could indeed help people shed pounds, or at least keep them from gaining weight.
“Those practicing yoga who were overweight to start with lost about 5 pounds during the same time period those not practicing yoga gained 14 pounds,” says Kristal.
For the study, he says, practicing yoga was defined as at least one 30-minute session per week for four or more years.
I think yoga is a great form of exercise that looks helps our body from a holistic point of view.