A huge part of what we do at 5EW is yoga and as more and more of you are heading into the studio I thought now would be the perfect time to talk about the power of yoga, starting with – what exactly is it?

Contrary to popular belief, yoga is not just about bending and twisting it’s really an integrated set of teachings around the science of life. These teachings have been designed to show us how to live holistically while cultivating happiness and achieving a greater sense of self-awareness and higher consciousness.

The word ‘yoga’  is derived from the Sanskrit root ‘yuj’ meaning to yoke or join together and it’s  originally a 5,000 year old  practice from the Vedic traditions of India and the Himalayas. Ancient practitioners experimented and refined the practice through years of trial and error and western science has added much to the body of research that supports the benefits of this ancient practice with well-designed studies demonstrating incredible health benefits.

The practice of yoga includes yoga postures (asana), breathing techniques (pranayama), meditation and philosophy and in a yoga class attention is given to all four areas. By paying attention to our breath, body and mind we begin to balance our internal systems and create a sense of peacefulness and clarity of the mind.

Another translation of the word yoga is ‘union’, as yoga brings the body and mind into harmony, and guides a process of self-enquiry that leads to a greater connection to ourselves and others. For those regularly rolling out their mat you may have already experienced a change in your mental state and flexibility and for those just starting out know that once you start it’s a journey that never really ends and is full of personal development.

My advice? Take your time. Don’t try to keep up with others. Do your best to leave any insecurities at the door and know that you are welcome here.

Join us on the mat.