Yoga offers health benefits no matter your age, fitness level

Yoga offers health benefits no matter your age, fitness level

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Stress can have a tremendous impact on your body. And one way to help relieve that stress is with yoga.

You can feel it as soon as you enter the studio at Shanti Yoga in Gulfport. It’s a calming effect that yoga instructor Joanna McClain, 45, believes carries over into the rest of your daily life.

“It helps with patience, relaxation, stress and worry; you know calming the mind,” McClain said.

She teaches at Shanti Yoga three times a week, after finishing her regular work day.

“I teach in the evenings. So coming here and being with the students, helping someone else calm their life or feel better themselves is what I enjoy most.”

One of those students is Angela Rivera, 40, who discovered the benefits of yoga a few years ago. After a busy stressful day at work, she makes time to come to class at least three times a week.

“I enjoy doing it more at a studio with an instructor. I tried it at home, but coming to class I get a lot more out of it. It’s more therapeutic for me,” Rivera said. “It’s relaxing. Something I look forward to. I enjoy the stretching. I forget about the worries of the day and simply enjoy time for myself.”

Yoga not only helps the mind, it helps the body with flexibility balance, building strength, reducing chronic pain, even getting a better night’s sleep.

McClain teaches students of all levels and no one should be afraid to try yoga.

“Everyone thinks they can’t do yoga, because they can’t bend this way or can’t do this pose, but it’s all about opening yourself up,” McClain said.

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