How Yoga can Help You Get Stronger and Reduce Your Risk of Injury – a guest blog by Bridget Sandorford

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How Yoga can Help You Get Stronger and Reduce Your Risk of Injury - a guest blog by Bridget Sandorford Yoga isn't just some New Age, crunchy, granola exercise that aging hippies and Third Eye seekers like to do. It's actually a great way to strengthen your body, improve flexibility and enhance your health. Yoga can help you to lose weight, to relieve stress and to feel your best. When practiced regularly, yoga can also help you to get stronger so you can reduce your risk of injury. Here's how: Yoga Increases Flexibility Regular yoga practice can help you to make your muscles long and limber. When you are more flexible, your body is more adaptable to a wide variety of activities, reducing your risk of injury when you're doing them. You won't have to worry so much about throwing your back out or pulling a hamstring. Your body will be much more adaptable, and the risk of these injuries will be lowered. Yoga Uses More of Your Muscles Yoga makes you exercise muscles that you might not have even know that you had. As a result, you start strengthening muscles that you didn't even know you had. Your whole body becomes stronger when you do yoga regularly, and that makes it easier for you to do a wide variety of activities. With a stronger body, you will face fewer injuries from doing basic activities. Yoga Strengthens Supporting Muscles Many common injuries are not the result of weak muscles in that area of the body but rather weak supporting muscles. For example, you may suffer pains or injury in your back as a result of weak hip and hamstring muscles. Yoga helps to strengthen your supporting muscles, which can reduce your risk of injury and pain. Yoga Relieves Muscle Tension Stress can cause you to hold tension in your muscles, causing pain and limiting range of motion. Regular yoga practice helps to relieve stress and tension in your muscles. As a result, your muscles are more relaxed, you feel less pain, and you have a greater range of motion, which will reduce your overall risk of injury. You'll feel better and you'll be able to perform better. Yoga may have earned a bad rap as the darling of fringe health fanatics, but it is quickly becoming embraced by mainstream audiences as more and more people realize its health benefits. If you are looking to make your back stronger, check out these yoga poses ( for strengthening the muscles in your back. Even if you don't do these poses, a regular yoga practice that encompasses a variety of poses should be enough to help you strengthen your total body and reduce your overall risk of injury. Do you practice yoga? Tell us how it has helped you to become stronger and healthier in the comments! About the Author: Bridget Sandorford is a freelance food and culinary writer, where recently she's been researching culinary training. In her spare time, she enjoys biking, painting and working on her first cookbook.