If you had to guess which bill presented to the United Nations General Assembly had the highest number of co-sponsors ever, which would you guess? You probably wouldn't think of International Day of Yoga—but that's the answer! India's Prime Minister called for the adoption of June 21st as International Day of Yoga, and here we are celebrating today. You may know yoga as a recent workout trend, but yoga has Indian roots that date back as far as 5000 years ago. In ancient India, yoga was considered a mental, physical, and spiritual way to practice meditation and transform the body and mind. So grab your yoga mat and let’s get to work. Namaste!
Why We Love International Yoga Day
A. It’s inclusive
People of all age groups, religions, nationalities and social backgrounds can celebrate, because yoga is accessible to all! There are so many different kinds of yoga practices, so it’s possible for anyone to start. Size and fitness levels doesn’t matter—there are modifications for every yoga pose and beginner classes in every style.
B. Yoga helps you manage stress
Life can be stressful sometimes, and it can take its toll on our physical bodies. Have back or neck pain, sleeping problems and headaches? Regular yoga practice creates mental clarity, calmness, and relieves chronic stress—which means it’ll help you with all of the above.
C. Practicing yoga is healthy
This is no surprise, but it bears repeating. Yoga strengthens and stabilizes the spine, relieving back pain, stress, anxiety and tension. It helps with weight reduction, maintaining a balanced metabolism and increases flexibility. And these are only some of its host of benefits.
How to Celebrate International Yoga Day
1. Bring Your Tree Pose to Nature
Practicing outside can breathe some fresh air into your yoga poses. Practice on the beach, at your local park, or even in your backyard. Surrounding yourself in a new environment can be much more engaging by having new things to focus on.
2. Do your om thing
Create your own flow of movements and discover new combinations to your favorite music. Sometimes a change in movement or music can help you focus your energy and sync your breathing perfectly to musical transitions.
3. Introduce a friend to the yogi lifestyle
Bringing a friend can be just the right motivation you need to revamp your practice. Not only will their presence inspire you to strengthen your poses, but also they can score big on free yoga deals for new students. Win win.
International Yoga Day - Key Moments
5000 years ago
The beginnings of Yoga were developed in Northern India.
This was the first systematic guide to yoga, setting up the foundations of the practice we know today.
Yogis travel west
These travelers attracted followers, who popularized yoga further.
Yoga comes to Hollywood
Indra Devi opened a yoga studio in Hollywood, dramatically accelerating yoga's popularity.