- What is yoga?
- Benefits of yoga for students.
The term yoga is derived from the Sanskrit word “Yuji” which means union. It refers to physical and mental practices which aim at the mind and body.
Although yoga is beneficial to all age groups, it can be advantageous to the mind and body if started at a young age.
The benefits of yoga for students are priceless. Below we have enumerated just some of the benefits of yoga in a student’s life.
Benefits of Yoga for Students
1. Strengthens the Core
As a student, you are exposed to several activities. Student life does not only mean academics and projects but also includes sports, extracurricular activities, and participation in cultural programs.
To be able to participate in sports, core strengthening is very important. It maintains balance and stability and also prevents chances of falling and injury.
Yoga is an important routine that builds and strengthens the core. It improves flexibility in muscles. There are many postures and routines in yoga that are specifically meant to improve and build the core of the body.
2. Yoga Improves Immunity
Immunity and health are important, not only to students but professionals alike. When a student falls sick, it means that you may have to miss a few classes to recuperate at home.
This is a loss of knowledge for a period of time which could result in underperformance during examinations.
The practice of yoga has a positive effect on the immune system. Research work conducted in this regard stated that a general pattern emerged suggesting that yoga can downregulate pro-inflammatory markers.
These results imply that yoga may be implemented as a complementary intervention for populations at risk or already suffering from diseases with an inflammatory component.
3. Yoga Improves Quality of Sleep
A study by John Hopkins Institution in Medicine suggests that Yoga can be a tool for good sleep. “There is some suggestion that certain postures may be helpful,” says Johns Hopkins sleep expert Anastasia Rowland-Seymour, M.D. “But the benefits are more due to its meditative properties.
Many yoga practitioners claim to have improved sleep. According to The National Health Statistics Report published in November 2015, over 55% of yoga practitioners claim better sleep after yoga while 85% claim reduced stress after yoga.
There are many postures and routines in yoga that can help improve your sleep. Take a look at these guidelines to improve your sleep through yoga.
- Choose the Right Yoga Style
It must be noted that all yoga postures and routines are not meant to aid in good sleep. Some yoga positions and asanas are meant to awaken the body and mind.
Therefore, it is necessary to know what kind of yoga is meant in aiding sleep. Yoga asanas that calm the mind and body like meditation can help your body to sleep.
- The Right Environment
Practicing yoga in a calm environment is beneficial in yoga for sleep. Choose quiet surroundings that can help you to sleep.
4. Improves Breathing Techniques
We often fail to think that our breathing techniques and patterns may be wrong. Do we ever stop to think if our lungs are getting enough oxygen or enough fresh air? We always think that breathing is an automatic function of the body.
However, have you ever noticed the change in breathing patterns when you are stressed, scared, happy, or elated? This change in breathing pattern is correlated to your mood.
Notice how when you are stressed you tend to take shorter breaths than when you are in a normal mood.
This is because when you are stressed your body uses its shoulders rather than the diaphragm to move air in and out of the lungs. This breathing pattern disrupts the balance of air in your body. Breathing to reduce stress – Better Health Channel
Yoga helps to correct the breathing pattern when the body and mind are stressed.
According to a research paper published in the National Library of Medicine, National Centre for Biotechnology Information- Sudarshan Kriya or yogic breathing is the treatment for stress.
Yogic breathing is a unique method for balancing the autonomic nervous system and influencing psychologic and stress-related disorders.
Many studies demonstrate the effects of yogic breathing on brain function and physiologic parameters Sudarshan Kriya yoga (SKY), a sequence of specific breathing techniques (ujjayi, bhastrika, and Sudarshan Kriya) can alleviate anxiety, depression, everyday stress, post-traumatic stress, and stress-related medical illnesses.
Mechanisms contributing to a state of calm alertness include increased parasympathetic drive, calming of stress response systems, neuroendocrine release of hormones, and thalamic generators. This model has heuristic value, research implications, and clinical applications.
5. Improves Brain Health
One of the advantages of yoga for students is that it improves brain health. According to a research article published in the US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, the review of the literature reveals promising early evidence that yoga practice can positively impact brain health.
Studies suggest that yoga practice may affect the functional connectivity of the Default Mode Network, the activity of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex while engaged in cognitive tasks, and the structure of the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex- all regions known to show significant age-related changes.
Therefore, behavioral interventions like yoga may hold promise to mitigate age-related and neurodegenerative declines.
Further studies in this area have revealed an increase in cognitive performance after yoga. In conclusion, breathing, meditation, and posture-based yoga increased overall brain wave activity.
6. Boosts Memory
One of the benefits of yoga for students is that it helps to boost memory power. What more does a student need than to remember everything he/she has studied for an exam?
In a study, adults with slight brain impairment were subject to a three-month course in yoga and meditation, while another group was made to practice memory-training exercises, consisting of skills and tricks already known to boost memory.
At the end of the study, the two groups saw similar improvements in their verbal memory, which is the type of memory used when people remember names or lists of words.
But those who practiced yoga had bigger improvements in visual-spatial memory. The yoga group also saw bigger reductions in their symptoms of depression and anxiety than did the brain-training group.
7. Better Concentration Power
Yoga and mediation improve concentration levels in adults and students. Yoga for students’ concentration is not a new concept. Historical writings have shown the practice of yoga and meditation has resulted in enlightenment.
Gauthama Buddha or the enlightened one reached enlightenment after practicing yogic meditation under the Pipal Tree known as the Bodhi tree in Bodh Gaya, Bihar.
Therefore, it is evident that yoga for students to increase concentration. A few minutes of yoga and meditation in a day can improve the concentration power of students.
Yoga for students’ concentration has long been adopted in schools and colleges. Multiple studies and research prove that yoga and meditation result in longer attention spans for students.
The group of Vihangam Yogis had significantly better mean performance on all tests of attention. Long-term Vihangam Yoga meditation improves attention span.
8. Improves Body Posture
Another benefit of yoga for students is that it improves body posture and balance. Body posture and balance are important for students in more ways than one. The benefits of good posture are:
- Results in fewer injuries
- Flexible muscles that improve movement
- Increases muscle strength
- Holds joints in place
- Prevents aches and pains
- Prevents early wear and tear of joints
- Increases chances of greater participation in sports events.
Yoga for students is one of the most trusted modes of exercise to improve and maintain body posture. Body posture can improve body strength and movement.
9. Improves Strength
One of the advantages of yoga for students is that it improves their strength. Strength is one of the major requirements in every student’s life.
Students have hectic schedules. Being able to withstand these hectic schedules requires immense strength both physical as well as mental health.
Studies have shown that yoga is as good as strengthening exercises in improving functional fitness.
10. Anytime Anywhere
Another advantage of yoga for students is that it can be performed anywhere and anytime. Unlike a coached form of exercise which requires equipment and physical presence in the gym.
As mentioned above, a student’s life is hectic. Often, students find it difficult to maintain good physical health because of the lack of time to visit gyms and other forms of exercise.
One of the benefits of yoga for students is that students do not have to invest in equipment and it can be done anywhere at any time.
Yoga is a very adaptive form of exercise. You can mould it to the level of every individual. You can adjust the intensity of the asana according to the age and physical fitness of the individual.
A person just beginning to practice yoga can do beginner asanas and slowly climb up the difficulty level.
12. Helps to Control Weight
Maintaining weight and the right Body Mass Index (BMI) is important for the health and physical fitness of students.
Yoga helps to maintain weight. Apart from the physical advantages of yoga for students, yoga also helps the brain to focus and concentrate on more healthy diets.
Yoga can train the mind to skip junk and unhealthy diets and replace them with healthy and nutritious balanced meals.
13. Yoga Builds Self-Confidence
As a student, self-confidence is important. Self-confidence is a good feeling about oneself. This good feeling about oneself will automatically reflect on the things we do. That is why we require self-confidence
There are many ways to build self-confidence. One of the ways is through yoga. The power of yoga can give you self-confidence and self-esteem. You may ask- how can yoga build self-confidence? Well, the answer is simple.
Yoga and meditation help you to control your emotions. It can also give you a break from your emotions, allowing you to completely concentrate on your mind and body.
The feeling of being in control of your mind and body can give you much-needed self-confidence and self-esteem. This is one of the benefits of yoga for students.
Whatever you do in life, yoga shows you how to do it better. As a student, practicing yoga has innumerable benefits as seen above.
Yoga is the key that can unlock self-confidence, peace, and calmness in your life. Busy student life can be calm and serene through techniques of yoga, breathing, and meditation.