Have you ever watched a dog as it wakes from a nap? They usually will yawn, then stretch their front paws out in front of them and move their upper body to the floor stretching into an upside down “V”. Once they have stretched to their limit, they release the stretch then end it with a full body shake, before happily trotting off on their way. It’s as if dogs instinctively know the benefits of stretching to relieve accumulated tension, align their spine and energize their bodies.
“A well-rounded, daily practice of Yoga, can go a long way to relieve muscle and joint pain and stiffness caused by excess tension held in the body”, says Paula Curtiss, Founding Director for Healing Hands School of Holistic Health (HHSHH). “In addition to improving circulation to the muscles; regular Yoga exercise helps you become stronger, more flexible and can enhance your over-all posture, ease of movement and mental clarity. Because Yoga is such an important and effective self-care tool, we encourage all students to practice it regularly. In fact, we include Yoga stretches as part of the warm-up exercises for many of our massage classes”, she added.
The word “yoga” comes from Sanskrit, an ancient Indian language and is considered an ancient Hindu spiritual discipline. This spiritual science offers a direct means of stilling the natural turbulence of thoughts. Yoga’s purpose is said to be “the uniting of the mind, body and spirit.
While there are many different versions of Yoga practiced today, most session will include breath control, simple meditation, and the performance of poses or postures, each of which has specific physical benefits. Practiced regularly, Yoga’s been proven to enhance overall health by creating balance in the body and by inducing both physical and emotional relaxation. Depending on the yoga tradition, the poses may be done in quick succession, creating heat in the body through movement; or, when done slowly they can increase strength, stamina and help to align the spine.
To find out more about Holistic Health or the 80+ Massage and Holistic Health classes offered at HHSHH, please visit us online or call us at (949) 305-2722 in Laguna Hills or (760) 746-9364 in Escondido.