Overcoming Anxiety Through Yoga
Standing in a Fierce Warrior pose, sinking further into that lunge, feeling the cool breath as you inhale through your nose, focusing your gaze over your fingertips – there is not enough capacity for other thoughts in that moment. Experienced yogis have long known about the centering benefits of holding your body in a yoga posture, while focusing on breath, both keeping you firmly rooted in the present.
Yoga combines physical postures while partnering breath work and meditation, and is being recognized and prescribed as therapy for anxiety concerns. Anxiety often catches an individual in the loop of replaying the past, and worrying about the future – neither of which is beneficial. By breaking the repeating cycle of past and future worries, your time on the mat in the present is helping in alleviating anxiety.
Recently it seems that every newscast brings another tragedy. It is easy for anyone to become anxious or overwhelmed at the state of the world. Anxiety symptoms can include feeling nervous, restless or tense, trouble sleeping, and having difficulties concentrating. Anxiety can also create physical symptoms, such as muscle tension and headaches. A yoga practice will help to keep your body flexible and strong, while relieving tension and stress, and moving you to balance.
We’ve heard many times, “Your yoga practice begins the moment you roll up your mat.” We can relate this to the morning news, or whatever may be affecting you, and overcoming those anxieties. Your yoga practice will give you the additional tools to face those daily challenges as they arise, and to focus on your present and building your best you.