Do This 1 Thing: To Reduce Stress

To Reduce Stress: Practice yoga!

Stress is not an unfamiliar concept to any of us, not by any stretch of the imagination. Whether it be school, work, relationships, or finances we are all faced with stressful issues at one point or another. Practicing yoga can help you to reduce stress in your everyday life.

What The Studies Show

The term yoga, which comes from the Sanskrit word “Yuj” literally means “to unite,” and the goal of this discipline is just that – uniting the body, mind, and spirit. It consists of varying postures, controlled breathing and meditation – or asanas, pranayama, and dhyana, respectively. In their literature review on the effects of yoga on stress, Chong et al. found that stress was significantly reduced in individuals shortly after a yoga intervention occurred. Improvements in the physical and mental health, affect, ability to sleep, and overall quality of life were also reported by those who participated. Furthermore, the study's findings also demonstrate that yoga is as effective as cognitive behavioural therapy, tai chi, qigong and other forms of relaxation in lowering individuals’ levels of stress.

So, what should we take from this? Well, there are simple (and fun!) things we can incorporate into our daily lives to help us cope and feel better, such as yoga or other empirically supported relaxation techniques. We should all take control of our lives by making time for ourselves, our mental health, and perhaps giving yoga a try! Join a yoga class or search a yoga routine on YouTube to try at home. JUST DO IT!

Reference: Chong, C. S. M., B.S., Tsunaka, M., B.S., Tsang, H. W. H., PhD., Chan, E. P., B.A., & Cheung, W. M., PhD. (2011). Effects of yoga on stress management in healthy adults: A systematic review. Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine,17(1), 32-8.