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Practise yoga the right way! How to utilise its effects for the mind, body, and soul 

People spend time doing hatha yoga, which is mainly the asanas. However, yoga is much more than that. Find out the benefits of yoga here.
benefthe its of yoga
Yoga can benefit your mind, body and soul. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Bijoylaxmi Hota Published: 17 Jun 2022, 22:20 pm IST
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Yoga is a great healing method and has been in use for ages. But even people who practice yoga regularly for staying fit and healthy might not know the benefits of yoga.

Your surroundings matter

According to ancient texts and literature on yoga, it is clear that for yoga therapy to be fully effective, the initial treatment should be done away from home in a yoga ashram. It is so because it is not possible to relax or detach completely at home. Your surroundings create health problems in the first place, so there may be counter effects to yoga. On the other hand, the peaceful atmosphere of an ashram automatically relaxes the body. Moreover, the healing will be enhanced, if the yoga ashram is on mountains, surrounded by greenery. In such a place, not only will the relaxation and oxygenation of the body tissues be better, the concentration of the person practising yoga will be the maximum.

If you are able to practise yoga in the mountains, nothing can beat it. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Different kinds of yoga

Mostly, people spend about an hour practising hatha yoga, which is mainly the asanas, pranayamas, and occasionally sat karma. But, there is more to yoga than just asanas. While hatha yoga is meant to rectify faults in the physical body, we, as human beings, are much more than just a body.

According to yoga and psychology, other than the physical body, we have a conscious, subconscious, and unconscious mind. The ancient yogis had realised that and developed other 4 other types of yoga as well, including Bhakti Yoga (the yoga of devotion), Raja Yoga (the yoga of concentration and meditation), Karma Yoga (yoga of action, where one does physical labour without expecting any material gains), and Gyana Yoga (the yoga of enquiry).

To heal the mind, body, and soul it is pertinent to practise all forms of Yoga.

Rules to keep in mind

To reap all the benefits of yoga, the following rules should be followed:

1. Yoga should be practised on an empty stomach. Food can be taken 10 minutes after the completion of the routine.

2. Use a folded blanket or rug for yoga practice. No soft spongy mattress or mat should be used as they do not provide the needed support to your back.

3. Face the east. Even when you lie down, your head should be in that direction.

4. Wear loose cotton clothes. Tight or synthetic ones restrict proper oxygenation of the system.


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5. Avoid plastic pots and non-stick pans to heat the water.

6. No microwave for any heating. The vitamins may remain intact, but the prana will be gone.

7. Follow the correct sequence of yoga for practising.

yoga for mental health
Understand the benefits of yoga for your mental health. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

How to do yoga the right way?

In a yoga ashram, the entire day is filled with several types of yoga besides the four main ones. They are Nada Yoga, Mantra Yoga and Tantra Yoga. Each yoga caters to one aspect of the human character, and together they take care of the complete personality. It makes the practitioner feel uniquely calm, elated, healed, and invigorated.

Everyone should experience the ashram life to realise how wonderful the effect of real yoga is.  The ancient Indians knew the value of combined yoga, and made rules so that people practised them from childhood. At the tender age of seven or eight, every child was sent to a gurukul, or the abode of a guru. While learning their future professional skills, the children were made to do yoga.

Ideally, all forms of yoga should be done every day, although in shorter versions. But if that is not possible, one should go to the yoga ashram periodically to get the benefits of yoga for the mind, body and soul.

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About the Author

Bijoylaxmi Hota, renowned yoga therapist and author of the latest book, ‘Yoga for super immunity’. ...Read More

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