It’s a peaceful approach to exercise. Yoga uses different stretches, poses, and breathing techniques to benefit the body. “There are overall health benefits that are related to the entire practice of yoga,” said Gloria Reilly, a health services coordinator with Lee Health.
Some of the benefits are well known—like reducing stress and anxiety, but some poses can even be used to help with digestion, balance, sleep, and core strength. “It’s really aligning the mind and the body with the breath,” said Reilly.
Reilly teaches Yoga at the Cape Coral Healthy Life Center. “This is definitely a class where you can just let your mind relax and just listen to the instruction and just focus on what your body is doing,” she said.
The poses are designed to help participants with things like inflammation, heart health, and posture. “For anyone who doesn’t know what all the poses are, and wants to just learn more about the poses, then it’s a really good opportunity for them to learn about it in a non-intimidating way,” said Reilly.
The poses can even help participants identify pain or weaknesses they didn’t know they had. “The point is to listen to the body and work with what the body is telling you. So if it’s saying I’m in pain, then ease back from that and just do what you can, because it’s yoga practice it’s not yoga perfect,” she said.
While the poses can help the body, the breathing techniques can help relax the mind. “Yoga is the practice that aligns us throughout the day so even spending five minutes a day or one class, one hour per week, it really gives you shift in your mindset, you feel the benefit,” said Reilly.
Benefits like being less stressed, being more awake, and feeling more aware and centered—all can improve your overall health and keep you in tune with your body.
View More Health Matters video segments at LeeHealth.org/Healthmatters/
Lee Health in Fort Myers, FL is the largest network of health care facilities in Southwest Florida and is highly respected for its expertise, innovation and quality of care. For more than 100 years, we’ve been providing our community with personalized preventative health services and primary care to highly specialized care services and robotic assisted surgeries. Lee Health – Caring People. Inspiring Care.
The following video is intended to be an educational tool about the science of yoga. The video features information on what changes occur in the body during yoga, the safety of the practice of yoga, and what the research says about whether it can help treat certain health problems. This is the second installment in NCCAM's The Science of Mind and Body Therapies video series.
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