INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT YOGA

INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT YOGA

The word “yoga” is derived from the Sanskrit root yuj meaning to join together.

It most often refers to the joiningImage of a conscious subject (jiva-atman) with a Supreme Spirit (parama ta man) in order to reach an ecstatic condition (Samadhi, a “placing or putting together”).

[Ref: “Yoga.” Online Etymology Dictionary. Accessed: July 15, 2011]

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The swastika is a yoga symbol that comes from the Sanskrit term Svastik, meaning “that which is associated with well-being.”

[DeMichelis, Elizabeth. 2005. A History of Yoga: Patanjali and Western Esotericism.London, England: Continuum International Publication Group]

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The yoga symbol “Om” is found in Hindu and Tibetan philosophy. It is said to be the primordial sound of the universe and is connected to the Ajna Chakra (the conscience) or “third eye” region

[Feuerstein, Georg. 1997. The Shambhala Guide to Yoga. Boston, MA: Shambhala Publications, Inc]

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The lotus pose is a sitting pose meant to resemble the perfect symmetry and beauty of a lotus flower. Siddhartha Gautama, the founder of Buddhism, and Shiva, a major god in Hinduism, are typically shown in this pose

[Simpkins, C. Alexander and Annellen Simpkins. 2003. Yoga Basics. Boston, MA: Tuttle Publishing]

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Yoga is defined as having eight branches or limbs. (Yama, Niyama, Asana, Pranayama, Pratyhara, Dharana, Dhyana, Samadhi). The third limb, “Asana,” refers to postures and poses that most people think of when they hear the word “yoga.”

[Simpkins, C. Alexander and Annellen Simpkins. 2003. Yoga Basics. Boston, MA: Tuttle Publishing]

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Most scholars agree that even though yoga and Hinduism are closely related, and that yoga is within religion, it is not itself a religion. Yoga is more often considered a type of spirituality.

[Rock, Margaret. “Girls Like Yoga and Yogurt, Boys Like Girls with Anything.” Mobiledia. July 28, 2011. Accessed: July 15, 2011]

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A York University study found that practicing yoga reduced physical and psychological symptoms of chronic pain in women with fibromyalgia

[Minhas, Pratibha. “Yogic Exercises Lessen Symptoms of Pain from Fibromyalgia.”  News Tonight. July 29, 2011. Accessed: July 30, 2011]

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Studies show that yoga reduces the risk of heart disease by improving arterial flow. Similarly, studies show that yoga also helps treat diabetes, high blood pressure, and asthma

[Simpkins, C. Alexander and Annellen Simpkins. 2003. Yoga Basics. Boston, MA: Tuttle Publishing.]

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Yoga can improve orgasms. When a person has an orgasm, the pelvic floor muscles that run between the legs rapidly contract. In yoga, the pelvic floor muscles are known as moola bandha. Yoga strengthens them, providing benefits similar to Kegel exercises

[Castleman, Michael. “Want Better Sex? Do Yoga.” Psychology Today. July 1, 2010. Accessed: July 15, 2011.]

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