After more than a year of pandemic, attention to mental health gained space and the search for alternatives increased to minimize symptoms such as stress, anxiety, fatigue and loneliness. Yoga comes into the picture right now as a practice not just for the body, but for the mind, which can be done at home, with the right guidelines.
In the program Reporting Paths This week, the subject is this ancient practice, which has a special date: June 21, when the International Day of Yoga is celebrated. The date was made official by the United Nations in 2014. The program Yoga: a path to balance airs this Sunday (27), at 8 pm, on TV Brazil.
With social isolation, retired Renata Varella had to stop practicing karate, aikido and horseback riding. So she decided to give yoga a chance, which she had tried to do when she was younger. “I’m a martial artist, so when I did yoga I thought it was boring and stopped, I just started again,” he says. With mobile apps and internet platforms, Renata started to practice and soon realized the benefits. “I became more elastic, calmer, I do breathing exercises and that helps me, for example, to ride a horse”.
During the pandemic, Brazilian yoga teacher Pri Leitte, who lives in the United States, saw a huge increase in searches for her classes on the internet, which now surpass 42 million views. “The practice of yoga is very welcoming, it can be done at any age, regardless of gender, flexibility or how much you weigh”, he explains. Pri Leitte showed this by getting pregnant during this period and continuing school until the last month of pregnancy.
The author of blog Flying Chair, Laura Martins, has been a wheelchair user and yoga practitioner for 25 years. Since the first time he looked for a teacher, there was no impediment for him to practice. “The teacher simply gave me the exercises, getting to know me to see what I could do, and we got better,” he says. Laura’s current teacher, Thiago Anício, explains that the postures are adapted and, therefore, they are possible for everyone. “The student sets his limitations, desires and possibilities, and the teacher interprets and adapts the class to that body, to that need”, he says.
At Mafagafo School, in Brasília, the practice of yoga was taken to children from one and a half years of age. Teacher Nambir Kaur says that the classes require greater preparation to enter the children’s playful universe. But the return is rewarding. “A mother told me that she was nervous and in a tense situation, when her 2-year-old daughter said: ‘Mommy, breathe!’ “.
Yoga became popular in the Western world from the hippie movement in the 60s. Years later, the Physical Education teacher and yoga specialist Marcos Rojo came into contact with the practice while still in college. He took several courses in India and, in Brazil, he set up, with other professors, the first specialization course in yoga at a Brazilian university. He says that the practice in the West has a lot to do with the physical part: “yoga is not at all concerned if you have banana planting skills, if your foot touches your ear; iyga wants to make the body a tool for the spiritual path”, he explains.
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