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The Key to Wellbeing: How Many Times a Week Should You Do Yoga?

woman is on yoga mat, hands a feet on mat in a lunge

For most of us life is busy. It can be difficult to find time for all the things we need to do let alone the things we want to do or the things we know will help reduce the stress that busyness can cause. Yoga is a wonderful antidote for this busyness. But how often do we need to practice yoga to feel the benefits? The answer to this question is varied, in truth any yoga is good but the more you can make regular habits the greater the reward. A big part of my work as a yoga therapist is in helping people to build the habit of a home practice and find ways that they can fit yoga into daily life to reap the benefits of better health and a calmer mind. In this post I want to explore this question of how many times a week should we do yoga to feel the health benefits.

close up photo of a yoga class showing people sitting with arms stretched up into the air

Beginning with yoga and feeling the rewards doesn’t require a huge time commitment. From the very first class, you'll experience immediate benefits – a sense of calm, physically relaxed, and a recharged mind. Research has even shown that a single yoga session can significantly reduce stress levels and enhance overall mental well-being.

Yet, the true magic unfolds when yoga becomes a consistent part of your routine. Picture it as building a habit that effortlessly integrates into your life, enhancing not only your physical health but also your mental and emotional resilience. Establishing a routine has been proven to amplify the positive effects of yoga on overall well-being.

Remember, the best yoga practice for you is the one that fits with your life. Life is dynamic, and so should be your yoga practice. It's not about carving out an hour every day; even dedicating just 5 or 10 minutes to mindful movement and breath can make a significant impact.

Whether you're seeking lifestyle changes or aiming to improve your health, consistency is the key. Studies have found that regular yoga practice contributes to better sleep, reduced anxiety, and improved cardiovascular health. The more consistent your practice, the more profound and lasting these benefits become. Your journey is unique, and the rhythm of your practice should reflect that. There will be days when you have time for more practice and there will be weeks when you hardly have time to think about yoga at all. Come back to it as often as you can and you will be grateful for it.

close up of a woman's hand in her lap with first finger and thumb touching as if she is meditating. she has mala beads on her wrist.

Yoga is far more than the physical postures you are used to seeing in a general yoga class. Yoga is a holistic practice, encompassing meditation and relaxation techniques, breath work (pranayama) and philosophy, all of which can further elevate your overall well-being. Remember, when you don’t have time or energy for the physical postures of yoga (asana) then there are so many other elements that you can draw on to keep the habit of your practice going so you can continue to feel the benefits. For example, research suggests that incorporating meditation into your routine can positively impact mental health and cultivate a sense of inner peace.

As we navigate the seas of self-care, yoga stands as a beacon of possibility. Whether you just make it to the occasional class or if you find time daily to mindfully move your body and focus on your breath, you will be glad of the time you spend doing yoga. As with anything in life, the more regularly you do yoga, the more of an impact it will have but if you don't have a lot of time and space right now for a regular practice don't be put off. You will feel some benefits whether you practice once a month or once a day. Remember, the best yoga practice for you is the one that fits with your life.

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