Yoga in Australia – A Growing Revolution
Yoga has always been part of the fringes of Australian health and wellness, and is often grouped with other exercises like pilates in gyms. But more and more, yoga is branching out into a serious mainstream exercise activity, rather than just a niche exercise practiced by a few enthusiasts.
In fact, 2015 was the first year in which yoga had its own day dedicated to it. And in an age when it doesn’t seem that hard to have a “day” for anything, this one carried some serious weight.
The first international yoga day was the brainchild of the President of over one billion Indians, Narendra Modi. He took his idea to the United Nations and the Secretary General recommended that the proposal be put to a vote.
The voting nations unanimously approved the motion, and 21 June was the first time the event was celebrated worldwide. In India, a world record was broken when over 35,000 citizens turned out in New Dehli to commemorate the occasion. The event was the result of weeks of preparation and was beamed across multiple screens and speakers so all participants could enjoy the full experience.
Meanwhile, in parks and nature reserves across Australia, many thousands of people also joined in the celebrations. Iconic locations like Bondi Beach were dotted with large groups with yoga mats throughout the day.
Why is Yoga Great For You?
The health benefits of yoga are numerous, but some of the most sought after are worth discussing in some more detail. A study found that yoga done regularly could increase bone density in adults, which was of particular interest to aging Australians who are sometimes limited to less strenuous exercise.
There are also some variants of yoga that have specific benefits. For example, Bikram yoga or hot yoga as it is sometimes called, has proven benefits for increased flexibility brought on by the heated room it is done in. The effects are especially beneficial in the large muscles like shoulders and hamstrings.
Pain relief is another reason that many people take up yoga and make it a regular habit. Yoga is a far more holistic and natural way to manage chronic aches and pains than regular medication. For example, headaches for office workers are often attributed to hours on end spent in front of screens with tense shoulders and necks, which can lead to painful migraines.
Yoga relaxes the muscles around your spine and base of your neck, which is a perfect way to reverse the tension that comes from sitting for long periods. Chronic back pain can also be reduced with regular yoga that leads to increased flexibility, although all decisions of this nature should be discussed with your doctor first to make sure it is right for you.
Venturing into the more holistic reasons people love yoga, the positive effects include reduced levels of stress and anxiety. Studies have shown that this can be attributed to the deep breathing and relaxation that comes from clearing your mind while you are exercising, compared to say, listening to music when lifting weights or running.
Of course, if you are thinking of starting a journey into yoga, then chances are your regular t-shirts and work out gear might not be suited to the job. Yoga clothes should be comfortable, but not get in the way, and keep moisture away from your body while also retaining the heat from your muscles so you can get the most benefit.
Luckily, Stomp Apparel has a range of clothing for exactly this purpose, so have a browse through our fantastic range and you will find something that appeals to you. You certainly don’t need to wait for the next international yoga day to see if it works for you!