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Guest Blogger Kristin Wells Talks About Hatha Yoga

Thursday, February 16, 2012
Think positive, think Hatha Yoga

Hatha yoga is a popular exercise choice in the modern health-and-fitness community.
Not only does it promote physical fitness, but it also encourages a healthy connection between body, mind, and spirit.
Many people use the term “Hatha yoga” interchangeably with the word “yoga.”
It is a general term that refers to any of yoga’s physical practices.
A Hatha yoga class involves slow stretches, simple breathing exercises, and (usually) seated meditation.

Some people love the relaxed feeling they get from doing Hatha yoga.
Others find the practice too meditative or slow-paced.
Those who choose to do Hatha yoga benefit from learning basic yoga poses
and relaxation techniques. Even beginners can do it.
In fact, it is a good way to become familiar with yoga before moving on to more challenging practices.

The practice of Hatha yoga falls under the category of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).
It is a holistic therapy based on ancient Indian philosophies.
According to some practitioners, it is based on a system of yoga
introduced by a 15th-century Hindu sage named Yogi Swatmarama.
He is best known for his Sanskrit manual, the “Hatha Yoga Pradipika.”

While Hatha yoga describes general yoga practices today,
it once referred to a specific type of yoga that prepared people for long periods of meditation.
The Western world uses yoga to treat numerous health conditions, including anxiety,
stress, depression, high blood pressure, and asthma.
Yoga could also assist patients diagnosed with cancers such as
Sarcomatoid Mesothelioma as a complementary treatment.
Many people do yoga as part of their daily fitness regimen.
The practice is recommended for fit and healthy people,
as well as those with chronic conditions like arthritis, chronic fatigue, and cancer.

According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM),
Hatha yoga offers numerous health benefits.
Clinical studies suggest yoga reduces stress, alleviates anxiety,
improves mood, and reduces symptoms of depression.
It also increases lung capacity, reduces heart rate, lowers blood pressure,
and improves muscle tone. While researchers continue to conduct studies
on yoga’s health benefits, the practice has been shown
to improve overall fitness, flexibility, and strength.

In general, yoga is considered a safe practice with few side effects.
Other types of yoga may be too vigorous or strenuous for people
with certain medical conditions, but Hatha yoga is gentle enough for most people.
Even some cancer treatment centers offer yoga as a complementary therapy for their
Relying on yoga alone for health and fitness,
or to treat a chronic illness, may have serious health consequences.
When combined with nutritious meals and a complimenting it with other exercise,
however, Hatha yoga can play an important role in overall health and well-being.

Kristin Wells is a recent college graduate from The University of Georgia and an aspiring writer. She wants to make a difference in people's lives through her writing. Kristin also likes competitive cycling, running, and traveling as much as possible.
To read more of Kristin's articles check out Musings of a Curious Mind.

Disclaimer: The opinions in this article are the writer's own and do not necessarily reflect my own personal views.


  1. shelly said...:

    Very interesting information.

  1. I've never tried it out myself. Thanks for informing us!

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