Effects of yoga on mind, body and soul

The definition

The great sage Patanjali has defined yoga as “yogachittavrtti nirodhah” which means the control of the fluctuations of the mind, the intellect, and the ego. Just as the moon is not reflected clearly in the turbid waters of a river, so also the soul is not properly reflected in an oscillating mind, a clear mind alone reflects the soul. For Self-realisation the fluctuations of the mind have to be removed enabling one to attain an unruffled mind

The word “yoga” means the world to me. To me it is not just a morning-evening practice. Practice is not the only aspect. Every aspect of your life, the way you walk, breathe, interact – everything should become a process of yoga. Nothing is excluded from this. Yoga is not something that you do. Yoga is something that you become. It is not an act, it is a quality. If you cultivate your body, mind, emotions and energies to a certain level of maturity, a certain quality arises within you. That is yoga. This is a tool with which you can connect yourself with the very source from where you have come and feel oneness with the energy which is holding all of us in a place. Whether you name it god, universe, energy or soul and it needs to be handled in an extremely committed atmosphere because it is a tremendous tool for transformation. If something has the power to transform, it also has the power to cause damage if mishandled.

Health benefits

Enhanced Flexibility:

Yoga is great for maintaining a good physical health and even low-intensity yoga can gradually help to increase flexibility.

Reduced Inflammation:

Many conditions like heart disease, arthritis, diabetes, etc., can cause inflammation. Studies have shown that yoga helps to reduce cytokine levels in the blood, which promotes inflammation.

Stress Relief:

Yoga is a great way to relieve stress and besides physical practice, meditation and breathwork can also help to de-stress.

Reduced Anxiety:

Anxiety disorders are becoming very common by the day and by performing different yoga asanas one can reduce their anxiety. Guided meditation can also help to reduce stress and eventually decrease anxiety.

Improved Bone Health:

Many postures in yoga, like the plank pose, fully engage your core muscles and over time can also increase the bone density and significantly enhance bone health.


Besides flexibility, yoga also builds muscle strength, making it a multimodal form of exercise.

Immunity Boost:

Yoga can help build your immunity by improving your respiratory system, and other bodily functions.

Better Cardiovascular Function:

Yogic and controlled breathing can help enhance various systems within your body, especially the cardiovascular system through better blood flow to various organs and the brain. It also influences the cardio respiratory centre of the brain to enhance its functioning.

Enhanced Brain Functioning:

Daily yoga practice can activate parts of your brain that are in charge of executive functioning, neuroplasticity, attention, and motivation. Certain yoga poses are specifically designed to increase blood flow to the brain, making it sharper and more alert.

Improved Mental Health:

Yoga reduces stress hormones in the body while increasing endorphins, which contribute towards well-being feeling. As per studies by a group of professors from prestigious institutions like Harvard School of Medicine, New York Medical College, Boston Medical Center, movement-based yoga and breathing-based practices helps to significantly reduce symptoms of depression.

Improved Sleep:

Yoga helps to get a calm, peaceful and undisturbed sleep.

Enhanced Balance:

Different yoga poses helps to improve the body balance.

Better Posture:

Yoga leads to better alignment of musculoskeletal system, and enhances spine mobility and thus helps to improve mobility, posture and flexibility.

Enhanced Self-Esteem:

Daily yoga improves state of mind, relieves stress, and brings in a sense of positivity which helps in enhancing one’s self-esteem

Improved Quality of Life:

Yoga has proven to enhance quality of life, especially for those suffering from chronic pain, by teaching to focus on important things in life


Benefits of yoga are still being discovered through extensive research by reputable institutes. The scientific research may not be as old as yoga, but the results have definitely been promising. Yoga is good for overall health of body as well as mind and the most important thing to remember is that yoga is about both, the physical activities as well as meditation techniques.

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