“Concentrating on yoga poses clears the mind, while focusing on the breath helps the body shift out of fight or flight mode. ”
–    yoga wisdom from Melanie Haiken

In school, work and life there is very little to actually make you focus on your own mind, let alone breath.  Unless you go to yoga, or do vigorous exercise, you may not be very familiar with the sound of your own breathing.  Yet little can be so fundamental to being alive – breath.  There is nothing like the calm of your own breathing found in yoga or meditation.

In my experience breath is the sound of you, being alive.  And amidst that sound is the presence of your own mind.  I find this extremely engaging when I am having a good sit on the meditation cushion.

Apparently there is a science to this.  The autonomic nervous system has two sub-systems – the sympathetic system, which is identified with the fight-or-flight response, and the parasympathetic system, which is identified with “the relaxation response”.  Yoga slows the activity of the sympathetic nervous system and dramatic physiological changes follow – your heartbeat slows, your breathing decreases, and blood pressure drops.  Having calmed down and no longer in a state of alarm, the body uses this space to start healing.  Relaxing to the point you can hear your own breathing is a magic salve.


Yoga Genie
Chief Bloggist, Yoga Whatever…

Yoga Genie

Yoga Genie

Restaurant reviewers find it easier to travel incognito, and so do I. I travel a lot for work and use this as an excuse check out yoga classes, yoga courses and yoga colleges around my home country, Australia. In this yoga blog, I refer to yoga centres in Sydney. I am not actually a yoga teacher, just a passionate yoga student.

I have practised yoga in the US and have done yoga courses in India but have no bias towards any yoga style. Actually, maybe I am biased to a yoga style, or at least certain methods of education applied in yoga courses, but I’ll leave it to you to find out what that is. My mission? I just want people to think a little deeper about yoga.

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