Should I Do Yoga Everyday?
Whether or not you should do yoga everyday is linked to your reasons for doing yoga. If you are focusing on meditation, breathing exercises and flexibility, there are very few reasons not to practice every day. Meditation and breathing exercises have shown evidence of lowering mental and physical stress, fighting depression, promoting healthy sleep patterns and increasing focus, so they are very healthy additions to your daily morning or evening routine. Stretching has long been considered a healthy daily activity, and most people are encouraged to do so for at least 10-15 minutes a day and after workouts. If you’re using yoga to increase flexibility, you are just stretching through yoga — as long as you don’t overdo it, performing it every day will likely help you on your quest to flexibility. Of course, it all comes back to listening to your body. If you are in a lot of pain and asanas that are normally easy are causing you discomfort, take a break. Sometimes the body needs a little rest!
If you’re using more vigorous forms of yoga, such as Ashtanga Vinyasa, three half-hour sessions a week are recommended for beginners. Bikram yoga, or hot yoga, should also be used less-frequently as it can cause dehydration and overheating. If using yoga for weight loss, your routine may require longer duration or more frequency until your target weight is met. However, it isn’t recommended to perform Bikram yoga for increased durations as it can cause heat stroke, inducing dizziness, nausea and confusion. Always be mindful of how much exercise you’re getting; because most people don’t get enough, we tend to forget the fact that it’s possible to get way too much. Exercise addiction is a real issue, so make sure to really implement yoga’s focus on balance into your lifestyle. And, as usual, if you’re unsure about how much exercise your body needs, contact your healthcare professional or yoga instructor. The advice and input of your personal doctor or trainer can be indispensable!
*Photo courtesy of Anna Gannon. www.annagannon.com