Finding Peace: The Practice of Yoga

Yoga is a practice that has been around for over 500 years and with good reason. Still, there are many people who are not aware of its many benefits or the overall effect it can have on their everyday life. Yoga can physically, emotionally, and mentally improve your life in various ways. In the lives of teenagers and students there is significant stress with keeping up grades and pressure from different aspects of life.

In an interview with Ms. Loscalzo, a physical education teacher at Thomas Edison High School who teaches an aerobics and yoga class said, “…teenagers might think it’s lame because they have to stay quiet and think about themselves and work on their breathing, but I’ve actually had kids come up to me and say they enjoyed it and it helped them study, focus on a test, or calm down…”

Some people might think yoga is simply meditation or that the poses are too difficult. In an interview with writer, YouTuber, and yoga instructor,  Krystal Aranyani, she said, “There are many types of yoga, some more physical than others. While it’s true aim is to get you to a place of higher consciousness through meditation, you can definitely gain physical benefits by active types including vinyasa and ashtanga.”

There are definitely many types as well as variations to the yoga you can practice. Vinyasa yoga, as mentioned is a fairly popular form of yoga, which focuses on coordinating movement with breath to flow from one pose to the next, and can be a good start for beginners. Ashtanga, is more advanced, physical yoga is great for building core strength and toning the body. There are many types between these difficulty levels that can be right for everyone’s capabilities.

Emotionally, yoga can help in times of hardships. Krystal Aranyani shared a personal experience where she explained, “I was trying to leave a toxic relationship and it was very painful. My confidence was low, my posture was bad and I was really depressed. It was the only thing that seemed to leave me feeling uplifted and stronger afterwards. I was beginning to make bad choices but this practice gave me hope. I honestly don’t know if I’d still be here today if it wasn’t for yoga.” These are some conflicts many of us may relate to and yoga can give the calmness and clarity that you need to move past and recover from it. The way you must focus on your breathing and form forces you to acknowledge a special consciousness over yourself.

Everyone should try yoga just once to experience the effect it has on them. Yoga can be a freeing experience no matter your reason for beginning and it can be the change that you unknowingly needed in your life.

Krystal Aranyani practicing yoga in nature. Credit to Koi Fresco.

Krystal Aranyani practicing yoga in nature. Credit to Koi Fresco.

Kathy Parsaram

Hi, I’m a senior working on the opinion section. My passions include singing, poetry, and sailing. I chose to write for this section because I am a strongly opinionated individual. I enjoy expressing my beliefs in a respectful manner and greatly care about health, politics, and environmental issues. I believe that journalism has the power to give voices to those who are at times too small to be heard and it is my goal to shed light on these issues.