Similar to pilates, yoga has been shown to improve
health. Several studies have found that yoga can help
to improve cardiovascular fitness, flexibility, balance,
and overall quality of life by reducing stress, anxiety
and pain. There are a broad variety of yoga practices
and goals. While contemporary Western yoga tends
to focus on yoga as a physical exercise, yoga is actually
much broader than physical poses alone and includes
a rich history of philosophical and ethical principles,
breathing exercises and meditation.
Some may believe that yoga is primarily for the
young or for those who are already flexible and
athletic. However, yoga uses the mind-body
connection to focus on the individual self regardless of
a person’s age or current level of flexibility or fitness.
While there are alignment guidelines to help keep
postures safe, poses can and should be tailored to the
individual. You can use props like blocks, chairs, straps,
or even the wall to find a version of the pose that feels
right to you.
The breath is the essential link between the mind and
the body. Breathing is the first act of life, and the last.
Our very life depends on it. In pilates the breath is
integrated into every movement. Encouraging deeper
and rhythmic breathing. In yoga, the motto is, keep
breathing and breathe deeply and consciously. The
extra oxygen in your body from this type of breathing
will definitely make you feel more energetic.
Whatever you enjoy – golf, running, swimming,
cycling, strength training or just loving life – pilates and
yoga, or any exercise program that integrates mind,
body and spirit, will help you find harmony, peace and
a happy healthy body!
Jan Waters, owner/teacher
at Banyan Tree Pilates and Yoga,
January/February 2019 GASPARILLA ISLAND 41
Call Jan at Banyan Tree Pilates and Yoga, (941) 964-4404 for
information on beginners or advanced yoga and pilates classes.
They are located at 320 E. Railroad Avenue .