Therapists Explain How to Create a Yoga Practice to Help Calm Anxiety
Yoga has a measurable impact on your mental health. According to a 2019 study from the Boston University School of Medicine, yoga sessions improve sleep quality and feelings of tranquility and positivity, while decreasing symptoms of anxiety and depression. And while the positive effects build up over time — so the more yoga you do, the more of a long-term improvement you'll see — participants also felt better after single sessions. In other words, you don't need a perfectly consistent yoga practice to reap the mental-health benefits; one quick, relaxing practice may offer immediate relief, right now.
Why does yoga ease anxiety like this? And for beginners, what's the best way to start if you want those benefits? We spoke to mental-health professionals and yoga instructors for their insights and advice on beginning a yoga practice in a way that can ease anxiety when you need it most.