Yoga for Stress

Yoga, meditation and deep breathing practices have been shown to calm the mind, relax the body and strengthan the immune system - all powerful benefits, when you consider that many medical studies pinpoint emotional stresses as a major cause of physical illness.

Stress related illness is on the increase in today's world.

In today's fast paced and often challenging world it can be difficult to avoid anxiety-provoking situations. From wars with Iraq, to traffic jams on the way to work, to demanding work schedules, and financial and familial difficulties, it's no secret that stress and stress related illness is on the increase. However, that stress does not have to make us sick. Yoga and meditation are among the activities that can help our mind and body rejuvenate, strengthan and relax - helping prevent you from getting depressed, run down, and even physically ill.

It is easy to see how a stressed out mental state can detrimentally affect your health. Consider what happens when you are nervous. Your heart starts to race, your palms start to sweat. You experience a whole range of uncomfortable physical symptoms in response to stressful thoughts. If these effects continue, they produce wear and tear on your body and immune system, ultimatley creating physical disease.

Stress and Illness

Stress has been implicated as a casual factor in many illnesses including heart disease, cancer, asthma, chronic fatigue, high blood pressure, irritable bowel syndrome and excema. Unmanaged stress can also lower your resistance to infections. During times of stress, existing medical conditions may also get worse.

Stress Management

Learn some effective stress management techniques

Although it is important to deal with the root causes of stress, we can also prevent unaviodable stress from making us sick by learning and managing good stress management techniques.The practises of (note - not the thinking about) Yoga, meditation and deep breathing have been medically proven to decrease anxiety and calm the mind, keeping you happier, healthier and more relaxed no matter what is going on in your outside world. Yoga also increases strength, flexibility, and stamina, making it the excellant exercise solution for toning the body as well as combating stress.

Yoga for Stress

Yoga can help to detoxify, rebalance and stengthen.

It is well documented that Yoga helps cure many forms of injury, sicknesses and health imbalances. The increase in strength and flexibility helps prevent, counteract and heal the many injuries directly caused by inflexibility and weaknesses in the muscular skeletal structure.

Yoga detoxifies the inner organs, and rebalances the hormonal system. And, for reasons that are not quite clear, the body's natural defence mechanisms are dramatically improved. It is common for long term yoga practitioners to look up to 10-20 years younger than their physical age. Apart from the obvious esteem-boosting aspect of this unexpected benefit, this indicates that a regular yoga practise induces rejuvenating factors at a cellular and energetic level.

I teach two forms of yoga - ASTANGA, a powerful, dynamic yoga that is suitable for people who like a challenge and do not suffer from any major health or physical problems, and HATHA yoga, a yoga that is suitable for the strong and not so strong alike. Hatha yoga is easily modified to compensate for and help heal physical injuries and illness.

Written by Rachael Lightbird

Rachel was initially trained by the Sivananda school of yoga, and holds both their teacher training and advanced teacher training qualifications. She has also trained as a teacher with Shiva Rea, in the Vinyasa Flow style of yoga, and is a qualified Yoga Trance Dance teacher. For more information about Rachel's Yoga, please see -