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Yoga is a holistic form of exercise and its benefits go way beyond the physical, and into the mental and emotional fields. Yoga can be a beneficial addition to a medically prescribed teatment plan, and can help to alleviate the mental and emotional symptoms of illnesses more quickly.

One of the core components of most yoga systems is the practice of meditation that can help to alleviate symptoms of illness in two ways: by quieting the mind and eliminating repeated negative messages, and by focusing the mind on positive thoughts and images.

Regular meditation will help your body get a balanced mind that can stay in control. When you achieve this, your mind will become clearer and more focused, and your ability to concentrate will improve. Positive thinking will help you to begin to experience inner peace.

Meditation is a state of consciousness that can be understood only on by doing. Ordinary experiences are limited by time, space, and the laws of causality, but the meditative state transends all boundaries. While you meditate, past and future do not exist. There is only the consciousness of "I am" and "now."

Everyone wants to he happy and healthy; this is a universal fact. Most people believe that some material object will bring this happiness such as money, a perfect spouse, a dream job, a new car, a big expensive house, but in reality, the list that would make you completely happy is never ending. Each "thing" will make you hapy only for a short time, basically until the novelty wears off. As long as you think that happiness will come from something outside yourself, you will never be happy and never feel healthy. Happiness, the blissful state, comes from within yourself. Anyone who believes otherwise is like a person wandering around on a deserted island, constantly disappointed by mirages of transportation and a telephone. Worldly happiness is equally elusive, always just beyond our grasp.

Meditation through yoga provides a lasting spiritual rest, which must be experienced to be understood. Once you can meditate, even the amount of sleep you need can be reduced to as little as three hours per night, and you will still feel more rested and peaceful than before. By reducing heart rate and consumption of oxygen, meditation greatly reduces stress levels which inturn increases health benefits. It seems that each part of the body, even down to the individual cells is taught to relax and rejuvenate. Meditation helps to prolong the body's period of growth and cell production, and reduces the decaying process. Meditation changes the makeup of both the body and the mind.

Deep, yogic breathing helps to cleanse and nourish the physical body. As you inhale fully, you are supplying a great amount of oxygen, an element that is essential to every cell in the body. As you exhale, the waste products are being expelled. Breathing also helps to connect to where tremendous potential energy is stored. When tapped through specific yogic breathing techniques, this vital energy is released for physical and mental rejuvenation.

One of the great things about yoga is that is can be integrated into your everyday life so easily. There is very little to no special equipment needed except and open and peaceful frame of mind. In all the different forms of yoga, there are literally hundreds of poses that you can perform.

There are many types of physical exercise, but the yogic system of asanas (meaning steady pose) is the most complete, benefiting far more than just the physical body. The asanas emphasize deep breathing, relaxed movements, and mental concentration. With regular practice, asanas encourages all parts of the body to work more efficiently. Many people believe that asanas were originally designed as concentration exercises to help improve the mind's capacity to meditate. Practicing asanas can also be utilized for awakening the potential of the spirit which also helps with health.

One of the best things about yoga is that it can be practiced by just about anybody regardless of age, sex, or physical ability. It will enhance your studies, reduce stress, and help you to enjoy your free time. If you suffer from any specific type of medical illness, it is best to check with your doctor before practicing yoga and it should not be seen as a substitute for a medical prescription.

Whether trying to attain relaxation or increased energy, yoga is a super way to achieve both. With all of the different stretching and breathing exercises, yoga can help you to become more physically and emotionally fit. It also trains your mind to think positive thoughts instead of negative ones which are highly associated with many illnesses. Sick or healthy, young or old, anyone can practice yoga to attain a healthy lifestyle.