Celebrating International Yoga Day 2020: Understand What Yoga is All About

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Yoga originated more than 5000 years ago. It is traditional art where practitioner acquires the utmost of their mind, soul, and body.

The Indian spiritual land has been reckoned as the birthplace of yoga. However, the art has also become popular in many parts of the western world. There are many Indian Yogis who are helpful by extending valuable art in the western world. Besides, they have also been able to establish the best yoga institutions.

Here, we discuss

  • History of Yoga Day
  • International yoga day Celebration Significance
  • International Yoga Day 2020 and India
  • Types of Yoga in India
  • Yoga Poses That Anyone Can Do Easily
  • 7 Benefits of Yoga

For the last five years, Yoga has been celebrated internationally with a specific day, June 21. This year, 2020 has become a catastrophic one. There have been major problems being experienced across the world such as bushfires, airplane crashes, and other natural disasters that are crippling the world including the Coronavirus. However, yoga is the thing that has brought all the qualities together.

 History of Yoga Day

International Yoga Day has been observed and celebrated since 2015. t is a gift for the world by Indians.

The concept of this celebration is to mark the longest day in a year which is on June 21 after being proposed by Indian prime minister Narendra Modi in the UNGA ( United Nations General Assembly) meeting. His proposal was then accepted by 177 nations in the UN.

It is said that when traced back, yoga is from Lord Shiva, a famous teacher to all yogis worldwide called Adi Guru according to the Sakal Times report. Many still believe that during the summer solstice, Lord Shiva instructed yoga knowledge across the globe and was known as Adi Guru. Moreover, Swami Vivekananda presented Yoga to the west by addressing in the US at the World Parliament of Religions in 1983.

International yoga day Celebration
Significance

Since 2015, the world has been celebrating International Yoga Day on June 21 aiming to bring mindfulness regarding the health benefits of practicing yoga. Moreover, it aims at educating people on their physical, mental, and spiritual benefits they get through working it.

Nevertheless, the World Health Organization has remarked yoga as a way of progressing health to the global action plan. It aims to have more active and healthier people across the globe.

During the first celebration of International Day of Yoga, celebrated in Delhi, where PM Modi participated and other 84 notable nations. It was an event that made India achieve two Guinness World Records. The first record is for having a class with 35,985 participants and the second is for having people that came from 84 nationalities.

International Yoga Day 2020 and India

Yoga is an old practice that has been followed since time immemorial in India. The practice is celebrated on Yoga International Day because they believe it is there to purify their mind soul, and body.

This year the day was celebrated under the theme ‘Yoga at Home and Yoga with Family‘. The day is celebrated to spread awareness about the benefits of yoga and its various practices. The aim is to keep alive the age old practice of yoga and spread it to the world. Also, during yoga day is celebrated to show the love and respect for the nature as it is an integral part in the spiritualism. It is as day we also treat nature’s bounties and make it sacred because that is our invaluable gift from ancient tradition. 

This year due to the coronavirus, the day was celebrated with full enthusiasm over digital channels. Also the saviors of our life kept the spirit of this day high.

Types of Yoga in India

Yoga is more about mental, spiritual, and physical where the collective disciplines aim at attaining liberation or moksha as India Someday reported.

Here are different types of yoga:

  • Hatha Yoga

This is the most practiced yoga type across the globe. This yoga is all about body alignments matched with the breaths. However, in modern terms, it has evolved and has become the type that focuses on the slow and gentle movements. You hold asanas for some breathes and then transition to the other. Besides, it is a good beginning for a novice person who wants to start yoga.

In India, you can also get some courses of Hatha yoga that are beyond asanas. These kinds of practices are like recommended diet, meditation, and pranayama (breathing technique).

According to Elephant Journal, Bhagavad Gita claims that Pranayama should be clear, voluntary, dynamic, and discerning participation for one’s life.

  • Iyengar Yoga

According to Iyengar, in his book, he claimed that this type of yoga is one focusing on physical practices and movements. Besides, this is also a popular type in India.

The practice is about precise movements where one aims on creating certain body alignments that have to be matched carefully with their breathing techniques. More about this yoga, it isn’t that free-flowing. You have to learn some sequence positions that you need have to hold for a period of time. For some people, they prefer to use props such as blocks and ropes that help their bodies become molded in some positions.

This is a great type of yoga especially to people aiming to get physical benefits.

  • Kundalini Yoga

Kundalini yoga is a more spiritual connection. It is the type that combines a sequence of movements that are called kriyas, with meditation, chanting, and breathing techniques. While practicing this type of yoga, your aim is awakening Kundalini which is the spiritual energy resting at the base of the spine according to India Someday report.

However, this isn’t about physical exercise but one that easily connects one to his or her consciousness to help unleash his or her potential.

  • Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga

Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga includes asanas combined with specific breathing alignment. It can be called as power yoga due to the intense physical movement it involves. This yoga type is still practiced widely.

Yoga Poses That Anyone Can Do Easily

There are some common yoga poses one can easily do. These are part of the yoga practices that are common to people and they include: 

Regular meditation – this is where one looks to find a comfortable seat where he or she can pause, reflect, and observe. No judgment is done for some minutes as Yoga Journal claims.

The downward-facing dog – this is a pose that creates harmony between your upper and lower body. You open the chest and lengthen the back of your legs.

Standing balance pose – this is the yoga practice that helps maintain the strength and stability of the lower body. Side plank also helps the practitioner achieve the same to the upper body. It is a beneficial act for women as Yoga Journal reported because they tend to lose their upper body strength with age.

7 Benefits of Yoga

Yoga has health benefits backed by science. Here are 7 benefits:

  • It helps to alleviate stress

Yoga helps to increase your heart rate, increase your blood pressure, and cortisol which is a stress hormone. According to Metagenics, yoga helps practitioners to feel relaxed and at ease.

It has a direct effect on controlling cortisol levels which are the main stress hormones in the body.

  • It helps reduce anxiety

Stress and anxiety are rampant in the modern world. There are more than 1 in 4 adults that suffer full-blown anxiety disorder.

Several studies have proven that yoga helps to reduce anxiety symptoms. Besides, yoga has been associated to effectively help treat depression.

  • It helps to decrease inflammation

Inflammation has become the root of illness such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Regular yoga practice helps in reducing blood markers of inflammation. A study showed that yoga helped to reduce levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and increases anti-inflammatory cytokines levels.

  • It helps lower the risk of heart disease

Yoga has been associated with reducing blood pressure and that helps to decrease the development of cardiovascular disease.

According to Metagenics, it reported that yoga and the addition of aerobic exercises reduce cholesterol levels, body mass index, and blood pressure.

It, therefore, indicated that when yoga is combined with traditional modalities, that can be a powerful adjunct for preventing and recovery from heart disease attack.

  • It helps to enhance sleep quality

You need quality sleep as it is good for your health. If you get poor sleep, you will be at risk of experiencing various diseases such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, and her disease.

Yoga induces physical and mental relaxation. Therefore, it is a natural ally that gives you better sleep. For older people, they usually have difficulty sleeping, and yoga can help them fall asleep and stay asleep longer.

  • It helps to upgrade flexibility balance and strength

Yoga practitioner benefits from increased flexibility, balance, and strength. As you grow old, all these declines and lead to debilitating falls. Besides, it might also result in the permanent loss of independence.

Many people benefit from yoga by gaining the above. However, it is not for the elderly alone but also for athletes.

  • It reduces chronic pain

Chronic disease has become a serious cause of many people suffering. Knee pain and low back pain have been associated as significant contributors.

A combination of postures, meditation, and controlled breathing are some of the yoga practices that reduce pain, enhance flexibility, and reduce chronic pain.

Wrapping Up

Yoga is a practice that is rich, complex, and colorful. It also engages in much life and human existence. Yoga is also a practice that has been deeply rooted in the Indian traditions. Therefore yoga plays an integral part in Indians’ lives. Indian yoga has also become something that many travelers want to learn when on holiday. Over the years, many schools have also evolved where each offers its unique type of yoga practices. That is because of the different types of yoga and many yoga ashrams in India. But, do you know that Indian yoga is not a one encompassing practice?

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