5 Fascinating Facts You Didn’t Know About Yoga
The spiritual, mental and physical practice of yoga originated in ancient India.
While yoga in general is well-known and practiced worldwide, we’ve gathered together a few fascinating facts you may not have heard about this popular practice…
1) There is an international yoga day
First held in 2015, International Yoga Day is celebrated worldwide on 21st June.
The event is commonly known as Yoga Day, and was first suggested by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a UN address.
The date is significant, as 21st June is the longest day of the year within the northern hemisphere, giving this date importance around the world.
To celebrate the first International Yoga Day, the Indian Postal Service released a special commemorative stamp, while 2016 saw ‘The National Event of Mass Yoga Demonstration’ held in India on Yoga Day.
2) Yoga has been used to treat psychiatric patients
A form of yoga therapy, referred to as Integrated Yoga Therapy, has been found to have a positive effect upon the behaviour and social functioning of psychiatric patients, with the possibility to help reduce symptoms of some major psychiatric disorders.
While the calming effect of yoga is well-known by practitioners and devotees, findings of a 2013 study discovered that yoga also appeared to have a positive effect on mild depression and sleep problems, as well as aiding symptoms of disorders such as schizophrenia and ADHD.
3) You can try dog yoga
Those of us with beloved pets can take them along to Doga, a form of yoga developed by New York practitioner Suzi Teitelman to help strengthen the bond between dogs and their owners.
4) There are over 100 different schools of yoga
Each one has its own specific practices and principles, though they all strive to attain the same goal of oneness and harmony with the universe.
5) Yoga’s health benefits might surprise you
Whether you’ve been practicing yoga for a while, or it’s entirely new to you, the health benefits of the discipline will still be staggering.
Ancient yogis believed we only had a certain number of breaths in each lifetime, leading to the creation of yoga’s carefully cultivated breathing exercises.
The breathing exercises within yoga have been found to improve mood significantly, but even more impressively, yoga can actually enhance your lifespan due to its positive effect on stress-associated disorders, and vital organs such as the lungs and heart.
Yoga is therefore a practice suitable for all ages to benefit from, and can be started from any level of fitness.