Just Say ‘Namaste’: How YOGA will Change Your Mind, Body and SpiritPublished by on Friday, July 15, 2011 at 10:00 am.
Yoga is an exercise that has been around for centuries. As yoga becomes a lifestyle for many people in the Western world, it is one exercise that can help individuals with weight loss, stress relief, and create awareness within the mind, body and soul.
There are many health benefits to yoga. “The practice can help you with awareness of your concentration, effort and mindfulness. It also gives you increased flexibility and toning of your body’s muscles including increased lubrication of our joints, ligaments and tendons,” explains Yoga Instructor Ananda Leeke. Other benefits include detoxification of your body through stretching and massaging of the organs.
If you want to start healing from the inside out Leeke (pictured at left) suggests starting yoga with “the intention to practice yoga, deep breathing and one pose. Once you begin to create a regular routine you can add more poses.”
Leeke has witnessed the positive changes in many of her clients since they began practicing yoga. She follows three yogic principles in her teaching. “Iswara Pranidhana (surrender) Sankalpa (intention) and Abyhasa (devoted practice). When you surrender your ego, your heart opens and allows you to live in the present. This will help you create space in your spirit, mind and body to set and intention for a devoted practice and self-care.”
For those interested in yoga Leeke suggest the following:
1. Start with writing down the reasons you are interested in yoga.
2. Research yoga on the internet.
3. Visit a yoga class your local gym, yoga studio or YMCA/YWCA.
4. Check out books and DVD’s from your local library.
5. Understand your full intention.
6. Start with practicing deep breathing.
ED NOTE: Ananda Leeke is a certified yoga instructor, artist and coach based in the D.C. area. She is author of two yoga inspired books. That Which Awakens Me: A Creative Woman’s Poetic Memoir of Self-discovery and Love’s Troubadours and Karma: Book One.