Turning to Yoga to Relieve Political Stress

If you need to get away from the constant flow of political views and conversations, yoga may be the answer.

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - A yoga studio is commonly a place people find peace. A heated studio like the one at True Hot Yoga in Scottsdale offers an even tougher workout.

It turns out, yoga is helping people toughen their minds as well.

“It seems like it’s necessary for them in their day-to-day life to keep balance,” yoga instructor Krissy Sullivan said.

Sullivan said whatever the motivation, yoga will help ground you.

It also turns out that yoga and meditation coaches nationwide say they are seeing increased enrollment and fewer dropouts from the annual “New Year’s resolution” wave of signups.

The American Psychological Association reports that stress nationwide is on the rise for the first time in 10 years – partly because of the current political climate.

“We carry so much unnecessary stress, so much unnecessary worry worrying about things that we can’t control. And you can just let it go here, leave with a new perspective, a calmer mindset, aware of what you can control and able to let go of what you can’t control,” Sullivan said.

Sullivan said politics aren’t discussed or considered at True Hot. When she leads a class, her first instruction is often to leave thoughts, worries and concerns at the door -- don’t bring them onto your mat.

She said that could be why more people are practicing.

“It is very physical. You get into your body, you move stuff around, you work the muscles, you open up the joints, you get more into your body and it gets you out of your mind,” Sullivan said.

The American Psychological Association reported in May that 26 percent of U.S. workers felt stressed out by political discussions at work – up from 17 percent in the same survey last September.

“Slowing down, taking some deep breathes, knowing everything is going to be ok,” Sullivan said. “Child’s pose is a great go-to pose. It’s down on the floor, with your knees wide, your forehead down. It’s grounding and any type of forward folding, where you’re folding with your knees bent over your legs, letting stuff drain out.”

Breathwork, according to Sullivan, is key – as are simple poses – to leading a simple, stress-free life.

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