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  • Scripps Health

Five health benefits of practicing yoga

The relaxation and exercise advantages of various yoga styles

Yoga can be a great workout or a way to relax; there are numerous styles to choose from. “Yoga is a good way to reconnect mind, body and spirit — to allow someone the resilience to face whatever stressors or obstacles come throughout the day,” says Poulina Uddin, MD, a Scripps Cliniccardiologist who teaches a weekly vinyasa yoga class for cardiac rehab patients.

If you have prior injuries, have had surgery recently, or have a specific health concern, check with your doctor or yoga instructor to find out which poses to avoid or modify.

Health benefits of yoga

Dr. Uddin says just about anyone can enjoy the benefits yoga has to offer.

1. Reduce stress and anxiety

“In the same way it improves strength, flexibility and resilience for the body, it does the same thing for the mind,” says Dr. Uddin.

2. Helps with sleep

People who practice yoga get more restorative sleep.

3. I