Yoga, like the law, has been practiced for thousands of years. You’ve probably heard of it before and imagined super flexible types twisting themselves into impossible pretzel shapes, but yoga is so much more than that. For generations, yoga has done wonders for the minds and bodies of stressed law students and overworked lawyers.
This gentle ancient art is aimed at uniting the body, mind and spirit, through the practice of Asanas (postures), Pranayama (breathing) and meditation. Yoga helps you become more aware of your posture and your body’s alignment, which is particularly important if, like most law students, you sit at a desk for long periods of time.
Regular practice increases flexibility, strength and muscle tone, which is important for remaining in good physical health. There is a lower risk of injury than most forms of exercise as you’re encouraged to listen to your body and you’ll leave class feeling fantastic!
The mental benefits, however, are what make the practice of yoga attractive for an increasing number of law students and lawyers. You’ll learn some breathing and meditation techniques that you can practice anywhere when you need a time-out. Ongoing benefits vary from person to person, but commonly include better sleep, improved concentration, improved mood, a lessening of symptoms of depression or anxiety and an improved sense of wellbeing and calm. Just ask barrister/yoga teacher James Crisp.
Want to try yoga? Most community fitness centres offer free trials or you could try the gym at your university. All you need is comfortable clothes, a towel and a water bottle. Classes usually run for between forty-five and ninety minutes. Most poses have different levels, so if you’ve never done yoga or if you have existing injuries, you can stay at a level that you’re comfortable with. Talk with the instructor before the class and they can make accommodations for you.
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