10 Things You Get From Yoga Besides a Tight Butt

The following post was originally featured on Fit Bottomed Girls and written by Karen, who is part of POPSUGAR Collective.

Fit Bottomed Girls

If you are not already practicing yoga it might be time to give it a try. The practice of yoga is more than simply stretching! Done properly, it's an awesome workout for your body, mind and soul. Here's why!

10 Reasons to Try Yoga

1. De-stress. Slow, deep breathing eases workday tension. And bonus! It's healthier than downing a couple of martinis.

2. Increased flexibility. Increased muscle elasticity helps protect your body against injury.

3. Improved balance. Virtually everything we do, from walking downhill to toting groceries to riding a bike — they all require balance.

4. Range of motion (ROM). Could your golf swing use a little oomph? How about your jump shot? An increased ROM can give you a powerful edge in sports.

5. Builds stamina. If you can successfully hold this pose for five minutes, you can do anything!

6. Improved digestion. Yoga's twists and bends massage the internal organs and help to detoxify the system. These poses help relieve bloating and stimulate the digestive system.

7. Enhanced focus. The concentration you develop in yoga translates to other areas of your life and you become a better listener.

8. Better posture. When you have body awareness and a strong core you can't help but have good posture.

9. Improved circulation. Poor circulation can lead to fluid retention, acne breakouts, brain fog and more!

10. Superior oxygen intake. Controlled breathing teaches your body to use oxygen more efficiently and improves your level of cardiovascular fitness.

Want More?

Yoga's transformative qualities don't stop there. A regular yoga practice offers emotional and spiritual benefits, too! Practitioners report a better quality of sleep, fewer mood swings and enhanced energy levels. Their practice reminds them to live mindfully and helps them to cultivate patience toward themselves and others.

Don't be afraid of those first few awkward classes. Jump on the mat and see how far a yoga practice can take you!