Many people think about the physical benefits of yoga and tai chi, but have you considered how they can also support your mental health? Here are 4 ways they can help.
Most exercise triggers the release of “feel-good’ chemicals in the brain such as dopamine, serotonin and nerepinephrine, which help to boost our mood. Whether you practice in a more dynamic or a gentle way, the movements can elevate your heart rate, get your muscles working and stimulate the release of these brain chemicals. As a result, you might feel happier, which can make these practices a great addition to your mental health toolkit.
Did you know that yoga and tai chi can support your mental health by moving you from the sympathetic nervous system to the parasympathetic nervous system, or from flight-or-fight to rest-and-digest? When we’re in the rest-and-digest mode we enter a more relaxed state.
As we practice, we get to know ourselves and cultivate a more nonjudgmental relationship with ourselves. Practices like tai chi and yoga and really help to us to be kinder to ourselves, and develop a healthier, more balanced relationship with ourselves.
The tightening and relaxing of muscles can reduce tension, and the breath training included can be especially helpful as there is a relationship between stress relief and learning how to breath properly.
If these inspire you to give yoga or tai chi a try, grab a 2 week unlimited pass now.