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Benefits of yoga

Group of college students doing yoga in a gymnasium.

Navy Veteran Sue Skaggs has never felt better and happier since she's started her wellness journey at Tennessee Valley Healthcare System (TVHS).

Skaggs has been attending yoga sessions offered by TVHS Women's Health for the past four weeks. Although she first started yoga about six years ago, she had stopped since she didn't find a yoga studio. When she found out TVHS Women's Health at Charlotte Avenue was offering classes, she immediately signed up. 

"Yoga for me is me time," Skaggs said. "It helps keep me centered. It helps [me] stretch and the effects are amazing. This is self-care." 

Yoga is a form of physical, mental and spiritual exercise. The practice of yoga dates back to the ancient India during 500 and 600 BC, and it gained popularity in the Western world in the 20th century. According to research from John Hopkins, yoga offers a plethora of health benefits including: 

  • better heart health
  • better night's rest
  • relieve of back pain
  • improved strength, flexibility and balance
  • boost in moods and energy
  • reduced stress and more relaxation

"The nice thing about this class is that it's for everybody," Skaggs said. "You don't have to be an expert. It's great for beginners. The class is one hour each week, and the effects are amazing for me."

Since taking yoga with TVHS Women's Health, Skaggs noticed an improvement in her mood, flexibility, and breathing and lung endurance. Skaggs felt more relaxed and limber going into the following week after doing one hour of yoga  the previous week. She's recognized her days are filled with more positivity after attending a yoga session. 

Women Veterans yoga is held every Thursday from 10 - 11 a.m. at the Charlotte Ave. clinic. Virtual yoga is held every Tuesday and Wednesday at 10 a.m. If you're interested in attending, RSVP with Khamphaythoun.Sansavath@va.gov

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