5 Benefits of Practicing Yoga in the Morning
The benefits of practicing yoga are many, for both mental and physical health. Some of them are:
It relieves anxiety
Improves quality of life
It helps to fight depression
It can reduce chronic pain
It improves sleep
It improves flexibility
And many others.
But what about practicing in the morning? What’s the difference between doing it in the morning, the afternoon or by the end of the day?
Obviously, we’re all different, and time preference may vary as well as other factors such as lifestyle, yoga style, body type, availability and so on.
Even if you’re not a morning person, I’m not one either and since I’ve changed my workout and yoga sessions to the mornings, I could perceive many benefits. So, if you’re considering changing your routine, take a look at these:
Improves your mood
Any kind of workout - whether that be yoga or any other activity - increases serotonin levels, which is the “happy” hormone, responsible for promoting positive feelings.
Besides serotonin, our brain releases endorphin, dopamine, norepinephrine. These guys are also mood lifters.
Think about having this punch of good vibes right in the morning?
It sets you up for the day
In a good mood and a high level of energy, you’ll have more energy to achieve and do more things throughout your day.
Some studies have already proved that even low-intensity exercises boost our energy and decrease fatigue. Things simple as going for a walk, a short run or even a 20-minute yoga practice.
“In addition to allowing more oxygen to reach your brain and blood stream, exercise allows your blood itself to circulate more efficiently, bring more oxygen to your muscles and allowing for increased functioning throughout your body and heightened energy production.” says Kirsi Bhasin, a specialist in nutrition.
Improves your sleep
According to the SleepFoundation.org, “People sleep significantly better and feel more alert during the day if they get at least 150 minutes of exercise a week.”
Even if it’s tempting to skip the early morning yoga class, there is a long-term benefit on our health and that can be helping you to have a more restful night and better sleep.
You might get more disciplined
If you’re just like me, you might get overwhelmed by your daily to-do list and skipping your morning practice to either gain more minutes in bed or going through your list can be tempting as well.
However, committing with daily practice, it doesn’t matter if you’re tired or if you have deadlines to follow, will help you with the temptation to put things off. Also, once it’s done and you have already accomplished this goal first thing in the morning, it will likely motivate you to keep on doing it. At least, that’s how it works for me.
You’ll lose weight
Even the most basic type of yoga makes you burn some calories, as any kind of movement we do. Obviously, it will depend on what kind of yoga you practice, on your weight, height, and so on.
But it goes beyond that. Since yoga is a mindful practice and it creates awareness around the body, it also brings to practitioners mindfulness of what kind of food they’re eating. They might avoid foods that make them feel more sluggish and instead, make better and healthier choices.
The bottom line
Yoga is an ancient practice with so many benefits to human health that it doesn’t really matter what time of the day you’re doing it.
I found that adding yoga to my morning routine was the most effective choice and helped me to stick with it, rather than evenings, for example.
If you’re not a morning person at all but still would like to add yoga to your life, pick the time that works best for you and your rhythm.