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how quickly can you benefit from practising yoga?
The benefits of yoga are short, medium, and long term. After attending a yoga class, most of the time you feel the benefits straight away. Depending on the style or emphasis of the teacher, you should feel either relaxed, invigorated, mentally focussed, or spiritually uplifted after practising yoga – or all these things and maybe more! But it all depends on the concentration of the student of course.
A student cannot expect to feel relaxed in a guided relaxation if they are not paying attention to the guidance for example. In the medium term, of about 6 months to a year – a regular practising student (twice a week), would feel a definite improvement in flexibility and strength in the body; also in the peace and steadiness of the mind. They would find their breathing is better, and if practising meditation, then perhaps some insightful revelations.
If someone practised yoga regularly (daily) for 5-10 years or more, they would have certainly slowed down the natural decay, aging, and decrepitating process of the mind and body. Yoga practise done with sincerity over 3 times a week for a few years will have a dramatic and significant effect on the mind and body, but to reiterate, yoga done once with attention and concentration will also have an immediate effect. And it is only the concentration and dedication to the practise long or short term that will reap results at all.