Wondering how often you need to do yoga to see results? Here’s the answer…
If you don’t do yoga very often, you may be wondering if it’s even worth it. Can you benefit from yoga without hitting the gym every day – or at least several times per week?
The truth is a bit more complex, but the bottom line is that yoga provides many benefits – both physical and mental – even if you don’t do it daily. Obviously, doing it more often will provide more benefits, and the benefits you do achieve will depend on a number of factors, including your age, your fitness level, your familiarity with yoga, the type of yoga you practice, and others.
For those who do practice it – even on a semi-regular basis, yoga can provide loads of benefits, including improved flexibility, strength, balance, and posture, decreased inflammation, a stronger immune system, reduced stress, better sleep, and better mental health.
All of that without a gym membership?
In fact, if you’re super busy and don’t have time to make it to a regular yoga class, you can do yoga at home just once a week, and realize some of these benefits for yourself.
According to this article from Greatest.com, here’s how even intermittent yoga practice can benefit you:
First things first: “We know from exercise that the more you do, generally the more benefits you get,” says William J. Broad, a science writer and author of The Science of Yoga. “Yoga is no different. Practicing once a week is good. Practicing three to four times per week would be better.”
………………………………………….“Practicing yoga once a week gives you a time every week to focus on your breathing, which in turn, allows you to be present,” says Heidi Kristoffer, a yoga instructor at The Movement. “Being in the present moment gives you a total time-out from the rest of the world and resets your system.”
Physically, a one hour yoga class won’t tout the same calorie-blasting effects as 60 minutes of cardio. But it will increase your blood flow, get your oxygen moving, and, “get any stuck parts of your body ‘unstuck,’” Kristoffer says.
“If you commit to a weekly practice, depending on the class you take, your flexibility will improve over time, leading to fewer injuries, and you will experience toning in all of your muscles,” Kristoffer says. “Not to mention a stronger core, which leads to less back pain.”
Studies back up these claims: One found that a single yoga class for inpatients at a psychiatric hospital had the ability to significantly reduce tension, anxiety, depression, anger, hostility, and fatigue. Another found that twelve weeks of either once- or twice-weekly hatha yoga classes were equally effective in treating lower back pain. And if you’ve been ditching yoga to make time for a more sweat-centric workout, know that research shows yoga is just as healthy for your heart as taking a cycling class.
Of course, if you don’t have time for a 60-minute class every week, smaller increments of yoga outside a studio can work wonders too: Just 10 minutes of yoga before bed can help you sleep better. Additionally, a recently released 10-year study of 700 participants found that just 10 minutes of yoga per day is enough to see improvements, at least when it comes to preventing osteoporosis and strengthening bones…
…Still, to truly reap the physical and mental benefits and improve your practice, it’s better to block off an hour for class at least once per week. Even if you can’t, once you know the fundamentals of the practice, do a little bit every day at home, Broad recommends. “My own personal mantra is, ‘A little bit often is much better than a lot every once in a while,” he says.
Read more at Greatist.com…