Olympics, Paralympics, and Yoga

The 2012 Olympics are over and the city of London will never feel the same again. I am, for one, definitely missing the atmosphere of the Olympics. All the athletes, volunteers, and organisers have done a wonderful job. The theme for the 2012 Olympics was “Inspire a Generation” and I really feel that the Olympics have truly inspired the youth. I can see the teenagers (and even adults) becoming more proactive about exercising. Teenagers are beginning to take more interest in sports and other various athletic activities that were all a part of the Olympic events. What will also be interesting to see is how the Paralympics inspire everyone even more. One thing for sure that the Paralympics will demonstrate for all of us are that we create our own limitations. We can truly do and accomplish anything that we are determined to do.

On that note, a few weeks ago, I asked my twitter followers if yoga would ever become an Olympic competition? And now, am I asking all of you. What do you think? Could yoga become an Olympic event? Well, I do know that many athletes do yoga to improve their athletic performance. In fact, Team GB cyclists have been doing yoga and will continue to do yoga, as the coaches believe that yoga helps the athletes with their cycling.

Yoga is actually quite challenging, even for those who are at the advanced level. Yoga is one of the few physical activities that actually does cardio, strength, and endurance in a single class. And this is why many athletes do yoga in conjunction with their athletic training. Since yoga helps to develop both flexibility and strength, the practice of yoga can help to improve all athletic performance and that is why it can also be used as an ergogenic aid. A few of my yoga students who also participate in sports, such as football, squash, golf, and dance have found that their yoga practice has improved the way they play, participate, and perform.

Bringing about mind-body-spirit balance is the key to yoga and is also the key to life. When all the aspects of the mind, body and spirit are in alignment, you automatically participate at your optimal level of athletic performance. With that said, even the athletes in the Paralympics would benefit from a regular yoga practice. Yoga Therapy and Hatha Yoga are great forms of yoga that aid in healing the mind and body. After an accident or any trauma, its often difficult to bounce back and continue with life. If we can learn anything from the Paralympics, its that our circumstances don’t define us….we define our circumstances. Its up to us to do the best we can with what we have and what we have is plenty to accomplish our dreams. Yoga can help cultivate your self-esteem and become a champion in your own world.

Enjoy the Paralympics and have fun cultivating your own yoga practice!

Health and happiness,