Tuesday, November 20, 2007

YOGA SPORTS



History:
Yoga Sports was born approximately 2000 years ago. Originally comes from India. From its very beginning, Yoga Sports has been, above all, spiritual competition among the various philosophy schools and monasteries in India. This art was devoted to ancient deities as well as happened in Greece with Olympic Games.
The mythological god of this art is Shiva as Nataraj. As a sport is basically founded on spiritual education. Mental and physical techniques are only taken into account if the control of human spirit has been attained.




Sport Definition:

Sport is every ruled play, under regulations that include competition between two or more persons. Every competition or sport shows whether a human being is competent in several skills, talents, techniques, strategies, tactics or other competition way, evaluated from physical, mental, spiritual, social, ethological and ecological point of view. Sport is Life itself teaching, since life is competition second to second.




Definition of the Play: Yoga Sports
Yoga Sports is a spiritual discipline that values spiritual education of human being and his control over sensations, emotions, passions and feelings. Awarding spiritual intelligence of Human Being, evaluating it through affective and emotional intelligence during play performance, for each competitor, technician and trainer.




Play Objective: Yoga Sports
Yoga Sports objective is individual spiritual realization, using competition as a self-improvement mean and as spiritual training towards the obstacles that we daily find in our path through life. Yoga Sports aim to achieve development of spiritual intelligence, affective intelligence and emotional intelligence of human being, during the competition, facing negative situations that might cause dissatisfaction, anxiety and stress. Each competitor is trained mostly spiritually despite the mental and physical training, Yoga Sports uses the yoga techniques contest as a mean and the ultimate aim is the spirituality.




Yoga Sports divisions


Yoga Sports have four Branches, Styles or Modes:



1. Athletic yoga sport

2. Artistic yoga sport

3. Rhythmic yoga sport

4. Yoga asanas sport



1) ATHLETIC YOGA SPORT
The Athletic yoga evaluates the perfect execution of an asana. Perfect alignment, strength, balance, resistance and accurate flexibility range. Perfect pranayama execution (energy control) and adequate breath or swara yoga.

The achievement of Pratiahara (introspection), Dharana (concentration) and if possible a meditative state (Dhyana).

Spirituality : The competitor cannot be nervous, distressed, anxious. To show calm, harmony, happiness or joy make the competitor to obtain higher marks.

These spiritual states are more valuable than physical skills such as flexibility, strength, resistance and balance.

The attitude is also evaluated, the right attitude and the competitors’ acts (karma yoga) where the person complies with his dharma (duty) without expecting a benefit or result. If the competitor is worried or anxious for the result, he loses the contest.




2) ARTISTIC YOGA SPORT

The Artistic Yoga is made of kramajis or asanas series that should be performed as a flowing sequence.

Besides the issues mentioned for Athletic Yoga, here is added the music, the attire, natural artistic qualities, general elegance, performing rhythm and the breathing rhythm.

The asanas sequence is performed to the rhythm of a music chosen by the competitor with proper criteria (good taste).

The asanas are linked with harmonious movements to connect them. The links should be the shorter movement to connect with next asana in the minimum time.

The competitor must show his spirituality and happiness while performing his vinyasa.
It is of fundamental importance that the competitor shows spirituality and the joy of movement in his performance.

The competitor should try to achieve a relationship of sympathy and empathy with the public and the jury.




3) RHYTHMIC YOGA SPORT

Rhythmic Yoga is played in couples, working on a mirror base (they both perform the same asanas, in the same range and with synchonicity) and keeping all the issues described for Artistic Yoga Sport.




4) YOGASANAS SPORT

It is a sport related with Yoga Sports

The Yogasanas Sport is based in the building up and execution of Yoga postures, performed to the maximum of flexibility, strength, balance, alignment and resistance.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Yoga for Thyroid Cancer Survivors

Yoga for cancer patients?
That's right, the ancient Indian practice of postures, breathing and meditation may be just what the doctor ordered. As a devout yoga practitioner and a fellow ThyCa survivor, my yoga practice has deepened and produced incredible additional benefits since the day I was diagnosed.

yoga:- Yoga is a Sanskrit word meaning yoke or union. I interpret it a the union of body, mind and spirit - or- a way to achieve wholeness. It is a time-honored system of self care dating back 5,000 years. Yoga involves a gentle series of stretches and poses (or postures), done slowly and with attention to your breath and related sensations.

For the healthy population, yoga helps take of your body in the prevention of illness or disease. The benefits are many: physically, it increases flexibility and muscular strength; mentally, it helps us learn to work beyond our physical limits through increasing levels of awareness. With continued practice, yoga helps us read our body signals and helps us honor the messages it send us in order to heal.

For those of us with medical challenges, the practice can help us move beyond a restricted mindset of always being sick. Continually thinking of yourself as being sick can evolve into a long-term, negatively reinforcing message to your body on how its supposed to behave. With lack of exercise over time, disuse atrophy or degeneration can set it. Muscle tone is lost, particularly in the legs, the skeletal muscles weaken and become more prone to injury - not to mention depression.

The beauty of yoga for cancer patients is it can practiced anywhere and from any position - a hospital bed, chair or wheelchair, if standing isn't possible. When starting out, you may wish to limit their practice to 10 minutes a day, as stamina builds. Most seasoned yoga practitioners go 1-1/2 hours or more each day.

As a thyroid cancer survivor, found yoga incredibly beneficial from both a mental and emotional standpoint following my diagnosis. It provided me with a wonderful calming feeling and put my stress, and sometime sheer terror, in check. yoga can help energize - even if you are exhausted! Specific postures can provide help for the following physical symptoms:



backache
fatigue
indigestion
headache
stress.

Yoga also often incorporates the practice of guided imagery and meditation. Meditation encourages a calm mind and body. It provides a great opportunity to send your body healing messages. Studies have shown it puts the body in a semi-drowsy state - awake but with intermittent, undefined thoughts.
EEG (electroencephalographic) studies demonstrate prolonged periods of slowed brain wave patterns (theta waves) among meditators. This hypagogic state equates to a deep state of relaxation..

Yoga Helps Cancer Patients:-

Yoga Helps Cancer Patients:-

A new study published in the April 2007 issue of Cancer, a medical journal targeted to doctors who treat cancer patients, reports that a gentle form of yoga helps those with lymphoma sleep better. Lymphoma is a cancer that arises in the cells of the immune system. The investigators found that among 39 patients being treated for lymphoma, those who participated in only seven weekly sessions of yoga said they got to sleep sooner, slept for longer, and needed fewer drugs to fall asleep. Study author Dr. Lorenzo Cohen, of the M. D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, explained that living with cancer can be a very stressful experience, as patients cope with a diagnosis of a life-threatening illness and the side effects of treatment. As is well known, stress can often interfere with patients' sleep habits. Over the years, studies have linked yoga to a number of health benefits, including lowering blood pressure, beating fatigue and easing chronic pain. In the current report, Cohen and his team asked half of the patients to participate in seven weekly sessions of yoga and the results were compared to other patients with lymphoma who did not participate in the yoga program. Some studies have suggested that up to three quarters of cancer patients struggle with sleep. This may have important health consequences since sleep disturbances have been linked with problems with the immune system, and an increased risk of illness or death. Individuals with cancer should be cautioned that while undergoing or recovering from treatment one should adopt a gentle routine, and avoid excessively strenuous routines. This is particularly true for cancer patients who have metastases to the bones which would make the skeletal system more prone to fractures. There is good reason to expect that a gentle form of yoga would be beneficial to not only patients with lymphoma, but those suffering from other types of cancer.


Yoga is good for Breast Cancer Patients

According to a recent study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (and as reported here by Reuters), attending specially designed hatha yoga classes was shown to improve the stress levels and sense of well-being of breast cancer patients. It's good to see yoga's benefits validated by the health-care establishment because it encourages people who might never have considered doing yoga to try it.

Yoga and breast cancer:-
Women with breast cancer that has spread beyond the breast may benefit from participating in a tailored yoga program that includes gentle yoga postures, breathing exercises, and meditation. The benefits of yoga could include less pain and fatigue, and more vigor, relaxation, and acceptance.

Women with breast cancer and who engage in yoga have improvements in social functioning. Yoga appears to enhance emotional well-being and mood and may serve to buffer deterioration in quality of life. There are natural supplements that have been studied in prevention or treatment of breast cancer.

Yoga can improve wellbeing in women with breast cancer:-

Yoga classes can improve the quality of life and well being of women with breast cancer patients -- particularly those who are not taking chemotherapy. Dr. Alyson B. Moadel of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx, New York, wanted to find out whether yoga could help breast cancer patients and survivors feel better. Her team randomly assigned 128 women to a 12-week yoga intervention or a wait list "control" group. Yoga classes were offered three times a week, and participants were urged to attend at least one class a week, and also instructed to do the exercises at home with the help of an audiotape. The Hatha yoga based exercises had been developed especially for breast cancer patients by one of the study's authors, and were done while participants were either sitting in a chair or lying down. During the course of the study, patients in the control group showed greater declines in well being than breast cancer women in the yoga group. When the researchers omitted patients undergoing chemotherapy from their analysis, they found that the women who did yoga showed improvements in quality of life; greater emotional, social and spiritual well being; and less distress. This yoga breast cancer research paper was done by Dr. Alyson B. Moadel and published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, October 1, 2007.


Yoga breast cancer help :-

In breast cancer survivors, the Iyengar method of yoga not only promotes psychological well-being, but seems to offer immune system benefits as well. The Iyengar method, created by B. K. S. Iyengar, is considered to be one of the more active forms of yoga. Pamela E. Schultz from Washington State University, Spokane randomly assigned 10 breast cancer survivors to 8 weeks of Iyengar yoga (2 classes and 1 solo session at home per week) and 9 to a wait-list control group. The women had an average age of 61 years, were about 4 years out from initial breast cancer diagnosis and were being treated with hormone therapy. None of the women had any prior experience with Iyengar yoga. Psychosocial tests showed that the "demands of illness," which reflects the burden of hardship of being a breast cancer survivor, fell in the yoga participants. These improvements correlated with decreased activation of an important immune system protein called NF-kB, which is a marker of stress in the body. Diet advice is also helpful.



Participating in Yoga During Treatment for Breast Cancer Improves Quality of Life


In an ongoing effort to scientifically validate the age-old belief that mind-body interventions have a beneficial impact on the health of cancer patients, researchers at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center have shown that breast cancer patients who participate in a yoga program during treatment have improved quality of life, compared to patients who do not.

The study, presented today at the 42nd annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology by Lorenzo Cohen, Ph.D., associate professor and director of the Integrative Medicine Program at M. D. Anderson, is one of the first to incorporate yoga as part of a treatment plan for cancer patients. It's also the first collaborative research effort representing the partnership between M. D. Anderson and India's largest yoga research institution, Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana (research foundation) in Bangalore, India.

"Cancer and its treatments are associated with considerable distress, impaired quality of life and reduced physical function. This is particularly true for women with breast cancer who receive multi-modality treatment over an extended period of time," Cohen says. "With our studies, we think that we could help ameliorate the treatment-related side effects that accumulate in cancer patients over time.

"The main objective of this study was to examine the feasibility of integrating a daily yoga program into the treatment care plan for women with breast cancer undergoing radiation treatment, and determine if this is something the patients found useful and enjoyable, as well as assessing aspects of their quality of life," he continued.

Sixty-one women with breast cancer undergoing radiation were randomized to participate in the yoga classes twice weekly at, or around, the time of their radiation appointments, or, as the control group, to be offered yoga post-treatment. The patients ranged from Stage 0 to Stage 3 disease; 48 percent had undergone breast-conserving surgery, and 75 percent had received chemotherapy prior to radiation treatment. The yoga program was designed specifically for this patient population - emphasizing breathing and relaxation, and excluding some positions, for example, that would be difficult, given the patients' possible weakened range of motion.

After just one week of yoga and radiation, the patients reported significantly increased physical function, as well as general health, compared to the control group. The study participants also reported marginally better social functioning, significantly lower levels of sleep-related daytime dysfunction, as well as marginally lower levels of fatigue overall. However, no differences in the level of depression or anxiety were found between the two groups.

"It was gratifying to see that we could make a clinically significant difference in these quality of life of these women in such a brief program," says Kavita Chandwani, M.D., yoga instructor and co-investigator responsible for overseeing the trial. "Whether it's yoga or some other type of mind-body program, we believe this study shows how beneficial it is to participate throughout treatment to help with quality of life-based issues."

As a result of these positive findings, a follow-up study, funded by the National Cancer Institute, in breast cancer patients receiving radiation comparing yoga to stretching exercises and standard care is ongoing at M. D. Anderson. Also, from the ASCO highlighted study, Cohen and his team plan to analyze the cortisol levels, a stress hormone collected from saliva samples, and immune function measured from blood samples that were both collected as part of the study.

M. D. Anderson recognizes the growing body of research indicating that relaxation-based interventions can contribute to the well-being of people with cancer. Through the Integrative Medicine Program, complementary therapies are offered through M. D. Anderson's freestanding facility, Place ... of Wellness, and are used in concert with mainstream care to manage symptoms, relieve stress, and enhance quality of life for patients and their caregivers. M. D. Anderson's Integrative Medicine faculty also conduct research in the biological and behavioral effects of mind/body based interventions; the anti-cancer potential of natural compounds; and acupuncture to treat common cancer treatment-related side effects.

Recently, Cohen and his team received a $2.4 million grant from the National Cancer Institute to study the effects of Tibetan yoga in women with breast cancer who are undergoing chemotherapy; the grant is the largest ever to study Tibetan yoga in cancer patients.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Yogic Breath


Right now, take a deep breath. Every good, yogic breath starts with an exhalation. So let the breath go from deep in your belly. This provides room for your inhalation. Once your exhalation is complete, inhale. Once your inhalation is complete, exhale. Continue to breathe consciously. Notice in your body where the breath comes easily, where it is restricted. Notice what part of your torso moves, and what does not. Notice where your breath stops and how deep it goes, both on the inhalation and on the exhalation. Throughout the day, notice your breathing pattern and where you hold tension in your body. Do you hold your breath when thinking? When listening? When performing certain tasks? Do you lift your shoulders or tighten your stomach? These are all part of your personal stress response pattern. Once you are aware of your pattern, you can interact with it, modify it, and make it work for you.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Yoga for Tension-Type Headache

An anvil on your head may not exactly be an exaggeration when you are experiencing a tension-type headache. This may also be felt as having a very tight band around the head.
A tension-type headache can be really bothersome. It is often caused by stress, anxiety, depression, unbalanced activities, and poor diet. Composing 90% of primary headaches (headaches that are not caused by another disease), tension-type headaches are what most of us suffer. So when you feel that heavy weight on your head at work, perhaps around lunch time when the day is slow and the sun is at its hottest, it's most probably a tension-type headache.
To prevent this unfavorable scenario, a more holistic approach must be adopted to stop having to suffer those troublesome and painful tension-type headaches. This can be done through relaxation techniques, proper diet, and psychological counseling if the underlying causes of the headaches are anxiety and depression.
When relaxation and proper diet are the things that are needed, Yoga is greatly effective in curbing those anvil-heads.Yoga Poses and Meditation can release the mind and body from the clutter and confusion of scattered thoughts and unbalanced activities that cause tension-type headaches.

The following are the Yoga Poses recommended for people who experience Tension-Type Headaches.

Easy Yoga Pose Easy Yoga Pose
This is one of the classic Meditative Poses and is usually performed after doing the Corpse Pose. The Easy Pose helps in straightening the spine, slowing down metabolism, promoting inner tranquility, and keeping your mind still.

Neck Exercises Neck Exercise
Many people hold tension in their necks and shoulders, leading to stiffness, bad posture, and tension headaches. Yoga practice can ease tension, increase flexibility, and tone the muscles. Learn some Neck Exercises in this section.

Shoulder Stretch Yoga Pose Shoulder Stretch Yoga Pose
Shoulder Stretches are great in relieving stress and tension on your shoulders, as well as your entire upper back. Practice them daily for several weeks and notice the changes. Learn some basic stretches for the shoulders in this section.

Sun Salutation Yoga Pose Sun Salutation Yoga Pose
The Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskar is a Yoga Pose which limbers up the whole body in preparation for the Yoga Asanas. It is a graceful sequence of twelve Yoga positions performed as one continuous exercise. Learn how to practice the Sun Salutation in this section.

Half Spinal Twist Yoga Pose Half Spinal Twist Yoga Pose
If done properly, the Half Spinal Twist lengthens and strengthens the spine. It is also beneficial for your liver, kidneys, as well as adrenal glands. Practice this Yoga Pose under the supervision of a Yoga instructor. In this section, learn how to perform the Half Spinal Twist.

Cat Yoga Pose CatYoga Pose
The Cat Yoga Pose teaches you to initiate movement from your center and to coordinate your movement and breath. These are two of the most important themes in Yoga practice. Keep in mind that the Cat Pose may not be advisable if you have any chronic or recent back pain or injury.

Wind Relieving Yoga Pose Wind Relieving Yoga Pose
The term Pavanamuktasana comes from the Sanskrit word 'pavana' which means air or wind and 'mukta' which means freedom or release. The Wind Relieving Pose works mainly on the digestive system. specifically, it helps in eliminating excess gas in the stomach.

Corpse Yoga Pose Corpse Yoga Pose
The Corpse Yoga Pose is considered as a classic relaxation Yoga Pose and is practiced before or in between Asanas as well as a Final Relaxation. While it looks deceptively simple, it is actually difficult to perform. Learn more on how to do it with the help of this article.

Relaxation Yoga Pose Relaxation Yoga Pose
The first step in Yoga practice is to learn how to relax your body and mind properly. Learn how to do the corpse pose and other relaxation techniques. Know more about the art of physical, mental, and spiritual relaxation in this section.

Anuloma Viloma Breathing Technique Anuloma Viloma Breathing Technique
The basic Breathing Exercises and Techniques will form the foundation of your daily Yoga practice. Learn how to do the Alternate Nostril Breathing Technique. Just make sure that you know the proper way of breathing before doing this exercise.

A Yoga lifestyle also includes a proper diet that, once adopted, can nourish the body with what it really needs. On the whole, not only are those tension-type headaches reduced, even eliminated through Yoga, but you will also feel revitalized and refreshed all over - and all these without the nasty side effects drugs may produce.

The body has a natural way of coping with illnesses, and this is where Yoga draws its principles from and what it enhances. Nature, including our own, knows best.



Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Health and happiness

Happiness is in the mind, and the mind is supported by the body – a healthy mind lives in a healthy body. Your happiness depends on your mind and it depends on your body. Without physical health you can't be completely happy, and without mental happiness you can't be completely healthy. Health is a positive state; not just the absence of a negative one. It's not only the absence of disease. For too long now traditional Western medicine has treated illness as only a disease: an enemy that attacks you and needs to be counter-attacked; but in reality it's nothing more than an imbalance in the natural harmony of body and mind. True healing means restoring that balance, and true health means keeping it.

Yoga means "to unify." It's the holistic approach to all aspects of life: physical, mental and spiritual. Yoga views the person as a whole; as a unique combination of body, mind and soul, and its techniques maintain that body-mind-soul harmony.

In the ebook Yoga Health Secrets we'll look into all the techniques for attaining and maintaining that body-mind-soul harmony for true health and happiness:


Health and relaxation Physical health, relaxation

Stress relief

Stress relief

Stamina and vitality

Stamina, vitality, zest for life

Concentration and memory

Clarity, concentration, memory

Motivation and willpower

Motivation, willpower

Self-confidence

Self-confidence and awareness

Creative insight

Creative insight

Love

Love for all

Peace and happiness

Inner peace and happiness

Friday, February 16, 2007

Yoga

Yoga is a way of life. It is predominantly concerned with maintaining a state of equanimity at all costs. All yoga schools of thought emphasize the importance of the mind remaining calm, because as the saying goes, only when the water is still can you see through it. Yoga Darshan or Yoga Philosophy also happens to be a valid discipline of Indian metaphysics (Brahma Vidya). It is the result of human wisdom and insight on physiology, psychology, ethics and spirituality collected together and practiced over thousands of years for the well being of humanity.

The basic idea of yoga is to unite the atma or individual soul with the paramatma or the Universal Soul. According to Yoga philosophy, by cleansing one's mind and controlling one's thought processes one can return to that primeval state, when the individual self was nothing but a part of the Divine Self. This is the sense encapsulated in the term samadhi. The aim of the yogi is to be able to perceive the world in its true light and to accept that truth in its entirety.

In Sanskrit, the term 'yoga' stands for 'union'. A yogi's ultimate aim is to be able to attain this 'union' with the Eternal Self with the help of certain mental and physical exercises. It is often said that Hiranyagarbha (The Cosmic Womb) Himself had originally advocated the traditional system of yoga, from which all other yoga schools have evolved. But for all extant knowledge of yoga and its practices such as yogasanas and pranayama, the entire credit goes to Maharishi Patanjali.

Patanjali systematized the various yogic practices and traditions of his times by encapsulating them in the form of aphorisms in his Yoga Sutra. In this momentous work, he describes the aim of yoga as knowledge of the self and outlines the eight steps or methods of achieving it. These are:

• Yamas
or eternal vows,
• Niyamas
or observances,
Yogasanas or yoga postures,
• Pranayama
or breath control exercises,
Pratyahara or withdrawal of the senses from distractions of the outside world,
• Dharana
or concentration on an object, place or subject,
• Dhyana
or the continuance of this concentration-meditation and
• Samadhi
or the ultimate stage of yoga meditation.

The collation of these eight steps is known as Patanjali's Ashtanga Yoga.