Here are some ways that yoga can support the addiction recovery process:
Studies show that yoga helps to reduce symptoms of stress that can be common in many recovering addicts. Research published in the US National Library of Medicine showed that people who practice yoga had lower levels of cortisol, which is the body’s stress hormone.
RELIEVE ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION
Many people experience feelings of anxiety and depression throughout the addiction recovery process. Yet research from the Duke University School of Medicine shows that yoga is effective for relieving the symptoms of anxiety and depression without the need for taking antidepressants.
Studies also show that people to practice yoga at least twice each week feel fewer feelings of fatigue throughout the day. It’s common for many recovering addicts to feel lethargic and fatigued as their body learns to adjust to the lack of drugs or alcohol in the system, so yoga can help improve those feelings.
ENHANCED QUALITY OF LIFE
Exercise stimulates the brain to release endorphins, which are our body’s natural mood enhancers. People who practice yoga regularly report feeling an enhanced quality of life and were happier overall compared to those who don’t do any exercise.
NEW COPING MECHANISMS
Many people struggling with addiction find it difficult to cope with painful thoughts or emotions, which may have led them to self-medicating with drug or alcohol to escape. The controlled breathing techniques used in yoga help participants to calm the mind and regain control of thoughts and emotions.
ACHIEVE BALANCE AND PEACE
It’s common for people struggling with addiction to experience a lot of anger. Addicts can be upset with themselves, plagued by guilt, or be angry at people around them. They lack a sense of inner peace, which shows up as frustration and anger. Yoga poses focus on calming the mind and exerting physical control, both of which help to provide a recovering addict healthy tools for positively directing their emotions.
IMPROVED SELF ESTEEM
Many addicts tend to have low self-esteem and a poor sense of self-image. Yoga stretches and poses help to tone the body and strengthen muscles, which can improve self-image. A big part of the 12-step recovery program is learning to accept your own failures. Yoga poses help to express that level of acceptance using controlled breathing exercises to improve self-control.
If you or someone you know is struggling with drug or alcohol addiction, contact our addiction center in Cumming, GA at (678) 737-4430 . We take a nurturing approach to your recovery that is designed to help you regain control of your life.