The ensuing lockdown following the coronavirus pandemic has taken a severe toll on people’s body and mind. Being confined to the four walls for months and adhering to social distancing norms has been quite exhausting for all. What to do at this time when social media has also run out of creative ideas to kill time? What to do when restricted movements have put your physical and mental health at stake?
Maybe try yoga — the age-old, wholesome exercise, which is not only beneficial for your physical fitness but also keeps a check of the anxiety level.
"Yoga helps deal with anxiety and stress and needless to say, it helps boost immunity. So during a pandemic, it's imperative that you practise yoga every day and reap the benefits," says Radhika Bose, a yoga influencer, better known as @yogasini on Instagram.
With over 2 lakh followers, the fitness trainer and lifestyle blogger emphasised that at a time when the lockdown has led to philosophical questions about survival, humanity and the future, yoga can be one of the most useful ways for managing stress and anxiety.
"Few minutes of any asana with concentration on breathing has so many benefits. You don't need a special place, you don't need a special outfit. All you need is an intention to take care of your body, mind and soul,” says the 31-year-old TEDx speaker.
According to a report by the Harvard Medical School, a wide range of yoga asanas can reduce the impact of exaggerated stress responses and may be helpful for both anxiety and depression. In this respect, yoga functions like other self-soothing techniques, such as meditation, relaxation, exercise, or even socializing with friends.
"I took up yoga almost 10 years back and it has helped me in a lot of ways but mostly with calming my mind and dealing with anxiety,” says Radhika.
Talking about her rise to fame as a yoga influencer, she recalls, “I posted a picture of me doing yoga and that was it. Since then I have been featured in so many places, given a TEDx talk, and attended summits. All because of that one yoga post in 2016.”
On this International Yoga Day, that calls for ‘Yoga at Home and Yoga with Family’ ensuring the ‘stay at home’ rule, Radhika says, "Doing it one day in a year won't count. You need to hit the mat every day. You need to celebrate yoga day everyday."
At a time when the pandemic and restricted human contact has brought multiple changes and chaos in one’s life, yoga can be a good escape with a high-yield approach to your overall health.
And if you think it’s too late for you to start, here’s what you must remember, "It's never too late to start your yoga journey."
This interview is part of our series #YogaTalks where yoga enthusiasts who have built a community, share with us their experiences with yoga during the pandemic.