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Utilizing Yoga to Improve Mental Health During COVID-19 Quarantine

Aanya has been stuck between work deadlines, disrupted routines, unhealthy dietary habits, and irregular sleep schedules. This has taken a huge toll on her mental health. In addition, she’s also feeling disconnected from her friends and family causing anxiety and depression. Let us see how yoga can help in improving Aanya’s mental health.

The family of viruses is called coronavirus. In December 2019, the world witnessed a new disease being released in the world called Covid-19. The condition belongs to the family of coronavirus thereby, making it deadly. The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the condition a pandemic. To manage the crisis, lockdown or strict rules and regulations have been introduced. It means that the general public needs to avoid gatherings, or crowding thereby maintaining the number of people at a particular spot. All these norms have been introduced with the motive of precautioning the public.

In such a condition, one is stuck at their house thereby, being isolated. It raises constituents of FOMO (Fear of missing out), loneliness, depressed and so much more. Along with these feelings, fear of the virus, trauma being caused to people suffering, and more are having a direct impact on a person’s mental health. According to the Mental Healthcare Act 2017, attention has been drawn to the subject that physical health is as important as mental health. It is because there is a direct relation between a person’s mind space and the various actions they enact. Being stuck between 4 walls and nowhere to go can get depressing, which is not a healthy condition. To overcome the situation, one of the greatest solutions of all time is yoga.

What is yoga?

Yoga is a form of exercise that is done by people to build a discipline between one’s mind or soul to the outer body. It promotes the ideology of healthy living. The term Yoga is derived from the Sanskrit word “Yuj” which means to yoke, join or unite. Practicing yoga helps one build a connection between mind and body also can be named man and nature. Yoga as a practice has the aim of giving people the art of “self-realization.” It helps to overcome various sufferings, illnesses and giving one the feeling of liberalization and freedom.

In the earlier times, the knowledge about yoga was very limited as the understanding and practice of this art were minimal. Now, as time has passed by and with various scientific developments, the way of viewing yoga has changed. According to modern science, the ancient principles of yoga state unity help run the universe. It has been proven now as the term yoga in itself means unity of your soul with the universe’s consciousness. Yoga has been serving itself as a spiritual and material outcome of the universe.

Yoga’s benefits:

In the past few decades, yoga has become a famous art. The awareness of the same is possible only if the number of benefits offered is good. Let us understand them –

  • Flexible

Rome was not built in a day, and so it is possible that in your first session of yoga you may not be able to touch your toes or do a basic asana. As time passes by, consistent practice will make impossible exercises possible. It is possible because you have been consistent. Yoga is not done in haste, deep breaths and slow countdowns allow you to ease your body and make the necessary movements. All the aches, pains, stiff hamstrings begin to ease up and make your body flexible.

  • Back pain

Yoga is as basic as stretching and increasing flexibility, and so it also helps in letting oneself receive relief from back pain. Exercises like cat and camel (Cow) pose have been highly effective. Yoga is considered an effective solution for back pain. It makes those muscles stronger.

  • Joint pains

Joint pains are a sign of arthritis. As one’s body gets flexible and muscle strength increases it helps in getting relief. Yoga is considered to be a series of gentle exercises, and so it helps reduce joint pains.

  • Sound sleep

A person practicing yoga knows that the act needs to be done with a calm mind and slow movements thereby, not indicating any hustle. Yoga helps one receive the exact tiring, not more nor less, and thus makes one fall asleep soundly. Therefore, practicing yoga will help Aanya take control of her sleep schedule and ensure a stabilized mood in the mornings. Too much exertion leads to preceding unproductive days thereby making a person exercise one day a big loss as consistency is the key.

  • Healthy lifestyle

As one is relieving themselves physically as well as mentally, it motivates a person to make healthy choices. It may be choosing the right food or the right company because no one wants toxic. It leads a path of man and nature towards self-realization. Choosing the right food option also helps you control the calorie intake or the weight problem, and you are taking the right action.

  • Blood flow

Practicing the various asanas lead to blood flowing in different directions of the body, reaching to cells in the hands, legs, and more. It helps the body to function its task better. The headstand or handstand pose makes the blood in the body flow from the legs and pelvis flowing back to the heart. The heart, in turn, pumps the blood and freshly oxygenates it to the rest of the body. The headstand asana can help if one is suffering from swelling in their legs. Practicing yoga also boosts the levels of hemoglobin and red blood cells that in turn carry oxygen to the tissues. Increased blood flow will help Aanya beat the lethargy symptoms and feel energized throughout the day.

  • Balance and posture

Our head is like a ball, if you keep it straight in alignment with your spine, your posture remains straight. If you tilt your head a little forward, your entire posture moves, and so your back and neck muscles need to support it. This leads to poor posture. Doing yoga asanas help you build a good posture. Yoga makes your body flexible for which various exercises can be practiced with a good posture. If you have a poor posture it leads to problems like back pain and knee problems. Maintaining a good posture will also help Aanya prevent the eye strains and headaches she gets because of excessive screen time.

Usage of Yoga for improving your mental health during Covid-19 Quarantine:

With the ongoing covid-19 situation and various variants being introduced, it is important to protect oneself by building a strong immune system. The optimal solution for the same is yoga as it helps one build themselves up physically as well as psychologically. An example of yoga’s effectiveness being cited from the financial express article states that a 70-year-old, retired government officer miraculously recovered from a stroke by practicing yoga consistently in the last year during the lockdown.

Let us understand now, how yoga causes an impact and thereby improve one’s mental health –

  • Relaxing

Along with your job, you also need to relax. Here, relaxation is a subjective topic. It necessarily does not mean that one shall sleep. It can also mean that stretching, meditating can play a major role in relaxing your body and thereby boosting your mood.

  • Reduces tensions

Everyone has tensions that they have to deal with. Some are time-related, some life-related. In all this haste, traumatic situation, all you have to do is take a few deep breaths. The tension tends to accumulate in a particular part of your body. Yoga is related to increasing your flexibility, and thus stretching being a major part here helps release the accumulated stress.

  • Peaceful mind

Our mind revolves around various aspects like anger, rage, frustration, fear, and desire in a loop. Practicing yoga helps slow down those feelings and help you focus on your inner self, making you care about the good parts of your life thereby, making your mind a peaceful space.

  • Self-esteem

Yoga helps you achieve peace of mind. If one is peaceful the low self-esteem diminishes, and the powers of gratitude, belongingness increase. It makes you feel worthwhile and thereby leading to a rise in one’s self-esteem. Yoga does not aim particularly at physical development but also spiritual aspects.

  • Relationship benefits

Having a peaceful mind after practicing yoga helps in healing. Any past relationship trauma can be erased, one can move on. It unites a person’s soul to the universe’s conscious that has a law of letting things go, and life goes on. One can then have a belief and go ahead and live their life.

Clearly, yoga has a wide range of benefits to offer for both Aanya’s mental and physical health. We hope that other readers like Aanya will be motivated to practice yoga after knowing its benefits.


How is yoga different from meditation?

Yoga is a form of exercise that helps one remove various obstacles from their life and suffering too. It helps one to unite their soul and the higher or universal consciousness. It is a path to self-realization. Yoga consists of exercises that require body movements. On the other, meditation is a part of the yoga process. In this part, no bodily movements are necessary. As we are always running around with various things to do, meditation helps us to sit still with the correct posture and focus our energies on particular objects or aspects of our lives.

Some facts that are lesser-known to date.

In today’s time, with scientific development and better research alternatives, more knowledge can be explored. Some facts are:

The age group between 30 and 49 years practice more of the yoga activity than any other age group.
A male yoga practitioner is called a “yogi” whereas a female yoga practitioner is called a “yogini.”
More than 100 types of yoga styles are available.
Yoga is over 5000 years old.
Teaching yoga is becoming a profession nowadays.

What is the different yoga poses one can practice reducing trauma?

Yoga seeks inner peace and so getting rid of trauma is important. Some of the poses one can practice are:

Pond poses.
Upward-facing dog pose.
Pyramid pose.

And more. Remember to practice these exercises under proper guidance.

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