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Yoga For Women
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5th Aug, 2009 | Source : Carrie Demers

In our quest for better health, it’s often tempting to search outside of ourselves for the perfect pill, diet, or exercise routine that will make us feel stronger, thinner, and happier. But the most important relationship a woman has is with herself. Yoga—and its healthy lifestyle tips about proper diet, sleep, and daily routine—can help women of all ages create a more joyful, balanced life for themselves and their families.

There are many styles and branches of yoga you can choose from today. Many branches, such as Iyengar, Kundalini, Ashtanga, and Himalayan Institute yoga, were brought to America by Indian teachers. Others are American innovations, such as power yoga.

No matter what style you choose, when practiced properly, yoga poses (asanas) will relieve muscle tension, build flexibility and strength, and balance the endocrine and nervous systems. And with the help of an experienced teacher, you can practice poses to relieve specific problems like PMS, hot flashes, back pain, arthritis, and indigestion. Breath work (pranayama) slows your respiration rate and activates “the relaxation response”. Meditation calms and focuses your mind.

By practicing body-mind awareness, you can gain a sense of self control and equanimity. And the teachings of yoga philosophy can help you realize that many of the things that upset you aren't worth getting stressed about. Numerous yoga centers and institutes can custom-tailor a program for a woman’s individual needs. The Himalayan Institute is a nonprofit educational organization that offers people of all ages the best yoga, meditation, and natural health practices for a balanced, peaceful life.

Carrie Demers, M.D., Medical Director, Himalayan Institute Total Health Center



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