Yoga For A Healthy And Happy New Year


By Jan Herzog, 

Now is a perfect time to start yoga or come back to yoga. 

Research suggests that yoga may help improve general wellness by relieving stress, and improving mental/emotional health, sleep, and balance. Yoga is also shown to relieve low-back pain and neck pain. The majority of adults who practiced yoga said that it helped in these wellness-related ways: 86% said it reduced stress, 82% said it improved overall health and made them feel better. 

People of all ages, sizes and physical abilities can start yoga with the right class and teacher. Yoga class generally includes movement, forms called poses or postures, breathing, relaxation and meditation. Some styles of yoga have more movement and some are less active. Some have a combination. Yoga also can involve chairs, blankets, blocks and straps (called props) to support various needs and abilities. In some classes you can keep your shoes on and stay off the floor. In private and therapeutic yoga sessions the teacher creates an individualized practice to assist the client’s goals. 

One of the best places to start yoga or come back to it is in an introduction or basic class or with a private session. In a kind, safe and supportive environment, you will build stability and balance and gradually open tighter areas. You will practice relaxation, breathing and meditation and learn basic postures and how to modify them with props. 

If you are already fit, but have not done yoga, It is also more safe to learn the basics before going to an “open level “ class. You will prevent injury and you will get more out of the class. 

Research has also shown yoga can be risky for some conditions. If you have joint, spine, other orthopedic concerns or have chronic pain, talk with your physical therapist or your doctor first. When starting any style of yoga, it is important to work with someone who is trained, experienced, and understands safe alignment and appropriate modifications. 

Jan Herzog teaches basic and open level yoga classes and private sessions at Brentwood Center of Health. She has over three decades of dedicated yoga training and practice including extensive training in yoga anatomy, alignment and meditation. She is also a licensed therapeutic massage therapist with over 20 years of experience. janherzog3@gmail.com 314-323-1990 www.janherzogyogaandmassage.com.