Yoga, as several people believed, is as old as the Universe. It is considered so old that nobody knows exactly when it actually started. These are the revelations of a yoga teacher, being an instructor in various yoga schools, on the subject of yoga itself in relation to shedding weight.
Owing to Yoga’s verbal transmission of the sacred manuscripts or texts and the clandestine nature of its disciplines and teachings, inconspicuousness and ambiguity construed its history and archeology. It is alleged that the early writings on Yoga were transcribed on palm leaves which were easily damaged, destroyed, or lost.
According to the legend, Yoga can be traced back to over 5,000 years ago. It commenced eons ago when people started being curious and trying to understand what life is all about.
Yoga is claimed to be both the Path and the Goal. The Goal is the realization of the innate nature of the universe or what others deem as the highest being.
It is through the experiences of life in the world of matter and senses that a person’s soul returns to what we call the universe, hence, it is called the universal soul. This journey is the Path to the Goal.
Based on the legend, Shiva is the known first Guru or the Adi Guru, or in simple terms the first yogi, which is an individual who is proficient in yoga, in the yogic culture.
It is deemed that Shiva reached enlightenment in a place called Mount Kailash, which is a major pilgrimage site in the Buddhist tradition.
The word “Yoga” is an ancient Sanskrit word which has been incorporated into English dictionaries. This word embraces the entire body of spiritual experiences and experiments of those so-called Realized Masters, who discovered the ultimate reality and traced a path for others to follow.
Yoga is frequently described as union because it denotes that the individual is united with the Universe. The root of the word is the Sanskrit Bija “Yuj” which means “to join together.” Take note that the English word “union” has a sound which is alike to “Yuj.”
Development of Yoga
Following diverse periods of innovation, practice and development, Yoga has progressed in various directions and dimensions under the guidance of what we call the eminent masters of the yogic culture. These masters applied a systematic code in the styles of Yoga which are distinct with one another but all of them still maintain the traditional lineage of the Science of Yoga.
In this day and age, Yoga is viewed as the union of an individual’s mind, body, and soul. It unites our lower egos with our higher selves in order to reach the Universe or the Highest Being.
In the field of health and wellness, Yoga has been regarded to possess therapeutic effects in connection with regular Yoga practice. There are studies that manifest the benefits of Yoga to the treatment of health conditions such as addiction, reduce stress, anxiety, depression, chronic pain, improve sleep patterns, and enhance the overall well-being and quality of life.
In addition, it is considered to reduce or alleviate structural, physiological, emotional, and spiritual pain, suffering, or limitations.
Furthermore, mechanisms of Yoga comprise meditation, active and restorative postures, and breathwork. With all the positive effects and benefits, therefore, Yoga is the mother of all health maintenance systems.
Despite the fullness of its history and the overwhelming evidence of its advantages, the following are questions that Yoga teachers still need to answer.
Seriously, How Can Yoga Make You Lose Weight?
From movies to television to social media, it seems everyone is doing some Yoga.
But really, is it actually worth it?
If your purpose is cutting a few pounds, you’re in luck, since recent studies have finally made valid the connection between Yoga and weight loss. Your favorite actress and influencer are not wrong after all!
Yoga, however, is not simply an activity you can dive right into and get out of an hour later. Yoga is a lifestyle that consists of a safe diet, exercise, adjusting posture, breathing, and a whole lot more. Simply put, if you’re doing it for the ‘gram, you’re doing it wrong.
Legitimate and knowledgeable Yoga practitioners pair their activities with healthy routines such as consuming more water and eating more moderately. In these modern times, there are various types of Yoga considered to be the foundation for most of what is available these days.
First is Hatha, which is the foundation for all Yoga types. This Yoga style is great for beginners who aim for a more meditative or restorative practice which tends to be a relaxing flow.
Second, the Vinyasa which focuses on breastwork and cultivating awareness in connecting one movement to the next. This type requires a fast and continuous flow from one pose to the succeeding.
Iyengar is the type of Yoga practice that is all about balancing flexibility and strength through proper body alignment.
Another one is Bikram which is a Yoga practice of a specific and unchanging sequence of twenty-six (26) poses which are done in a room with a temperature up to 105 degrees. It is believed that the heat will help to sweat out toxins in the human body.
Ashtanga is a type of Yoga that consists of primary series, intermediate series, and advanced series. This type entails strength, endurance, and commitment to practice.
Lastly is the Kundalini, which is about the awakening of an individual’s spiritual energy. This practice possesses more chanting, meditation, and breathing.
Yoga alone, the activity that is, is not enough if you want to gain longevity and a more vibrant and energetic life. In order to get to your goal of getting fit, sacrifices have to be made such as cutting your trips to the kitchen and spending less time on the couch.
There is no doubt that Yoga, indeed, can make you lose weight, but definitely, it’s just one ingredient to the recipe of having a good life.
Will you still train hardcore for 30 minutes daily just to shred off the weight?
It is common misconception that losing weights entails torture, something in between hard labor and a near-death experience.
Sure, hard work and determination help, but you don’t have to feel the pain, suffering, and starvation in the name of losing some pounds.
If you badly want to lose weight without the feeling of having to go to the nearest emergency room after your session, you’re in luck, because there are Vinyasa Yoga classes that you can take. In a moderate Hatha Yoga session, you could burn as much as 200 calories per hour. And if you think you can burn even more, there are other classes too with more flowing and active movements.
These doesn’t go without a risk though, so make sure that safety remains the top priority.
But if you’re a fan of punishing activities, there are also other yoga classes wherein pain, heat, and suffering is the main attraction.
Well, if you think you’ve had too much pizza and burgers, what else is left to do that to “pay for your sins.” If you get the drive and determination to get into shape through suffering and punishment, you can always find a yoga teacher who can be tough on you for the sake of losing weight.
In essence, whatever floats your boat, if you look in the right places, you can always find a yoga class specifically for you. Just remember why you searched for a class in the first place: to get fit and live a life of longevity. If you have to dial up or tone down your activity, feel free to do so. After all, it’s the long run that counts that will give you the benefit of a healthy mind, body, and spirit.
Couldn’t you just invent a Yoga pill?
In an age where colonizing other planets is a real possibility, it is a farce that humanity hasn’t invented a yoga pill yet.
Yes, there comes the occasional “miracle pill” that promises weight loss with minimal effort every now and then, but so far, all of those came with a caveat; a downside, a side-effect. Losing weight through these, minus the hard work, often resulted in other problems, such as fen phen and ephedra.
But given the popularity of these ‘weight loss pills’, it seems humanity, especially the couch potatoes, will go the distance just to lose some weight without shedding some sweat, even if it meant adverse health effects.
Do not fall to the promise of an easy way to get fit. Often, instead of making your life more blissful, what they cause you is risk to your health, and at worst, to your life.
This may sound old-school, but nothing beats the old-fashioned passion and hard work. Work for it. Yoga practices are there and have been proven effective throughout history.
In your journey to getting fit, stay safe, stay healthy and never push yourself to the point of breaking. As what the old adage says, too much of anything is bad — except for practicing safety, of course. You can never be too safe. Moderation is key so good luck on your journey.