BistroMD Health Library

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Exercise

Creating a lighter, healthier you is a multi-step process. One of the most important steps, and the main focus of this section, is exercise. Here we explore everything from the benefits of exercise to how much and how often it is necessary to promote weight loss.

20 Minute Yoga Workout

Grab a yoga mat and get ready to get long and lean in just 20 minutes! This workout will help build muscle strength and increase flexibility. Our yoga routine will also help you reduce stress levels and relax. So, what are you waiting for?!

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Yoga is not a new practice, as its development suggested to be traced back to over 5,000 years ago! Yoga was once rooted in ancient India, eventually governing itself as practice combining philosophy, meditation, breath work, behavior, and physical exercise.

Fortunately, yoga continues to grace its presence in modern day across the nation. Yoga also gifts a laundry list of health benefits to those who consistently flow on the yoga mat.

Luckily, too, reaping the benefits is not exclusive to yoga experts and practitioners, also known as "yogis." Even newcomers can flow into an boosted energy, better sleep, a healthy body weight, and other benefits of yoga workouts.

Full Body Yoga: Health Benefits

Cardio workouts and weight training are regularly recommended to support health. But incorporating a yoga daily workout can elevate any fitness routine. Such advantages of yoga encompass both physical and mental health.

The physical benefits of yoga include the following:

• Increase flexibility and mobility
• Progress strength and muscle tone
• Boost energy and metabolism
• Support a healthy weight and potential weight loss
• Manage blood sugars and diabetes
• Recover physical injuries quicker and reduce overall risk
• Improve posture and mitigate back pain
• Enhance the immune system to ward off illness and infection
• Ignite energy and metabolism
• Enhance athletic performance and fitness
• Improve cardiovascular health, including reducing blood pressure and heart disease risk
• Facilitate healthier lifestyle choices, including more nutritious food selections

As flowing into the poses benefits physical health, yoga and mental health also has an admirable link.

Practitioners of yoga and yoga-goers, can acquire mental benefits including an improved mood and reduced stress and anxiety. Additionally, psychologists and psychiatrists are finding yoga to be an effective sole or adjunctive treatment option for several mental disorders.

The top mental health benefits include:

• Reduce depressive symptoms and augment overall well-being
• Alleviate stress and anxiety, in turn increasing calmness and relaxation
• Increase mindfulness, or focusing on the present moment without judgment
• Improve sleep and other mood disorders
• Boost brain power, including heightened focus
• Improve self-esteem and self-confidence
• Complementary approach for managing schizophrenia, a psychiatric disorder
• Effective supplementary treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

A Complete Quick Yoga Routine

Do not know much about yoga? With this workout you do not have to! These moves are great for beginners or yoga experts alike. And anyone can reap the benefits of yoga.

The yoga workout below can also be completed virtually anywhere. With the quick yoga routine, hold each move for 40 seconds and take a 20 second break in between. Switch sides if noted. To increase the intensity of the workout, increase the length of time you hold each move to 60 seconds.

For best results, complete the yoga workout at least two times per week. Also aim for 150 minutes of aerobic exercise weekly and incorporate two to three strength training sessions. Participating in these exercises maximize the benefits of a comprehensive fitness routine.

And as always, it is recommended to consult with a physician before beginning any exercise program. Their professional approval and guidance can ensure its safety and lower the risk of injury.

So grab your yoga mat, a water bottle, and flow into these positions!

 

1. Forward Bend: 40 seconds

2. Chair Pose: 40 seconds

3. Downward Facing Dog: 40 seconds

4. Dolphin Pose: 40 seconds

5. One Leg Downward Facing Dog (Left): 40 seconds

6. One Leg Downward Facing Dog (Right): 40 seconds

7. Camel Pose: 40 seconds

8. Cobra Pose: 40 seconds

9. Upward Facing Dog: 40 seconds

10. Forearm Plank: 40 seconds

11. Side Forearm Plank (Left): 40 seconds

12. Side Forearm Plank (Right): 40 seconds

13. Bridge Pose: 40 seconds

14. Warrior I Pose: 40 seconds

15. Warrior II Pose: 40 seconds

16. Warrior III Pose: 40 seconds

17. Triangle Pose: 40 seconds

18. Tabletop Pose: 40 seconds

19. Child’s Pose: 40 seconds

20. Corpse Pose: 40 seconds

Written By Sydney Lappe, MS, RDN. Published on September 18, 2015. Updated on April 25, 2019.

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