Yoga poses strengthen and open tight areas of the body like the shoulders and muscles of the upper back. This can help you keep a good posture. Develop body awareness. Yoga requires you to contract or relax specific muscles as you stretch into each pose.
Yoga helps lower stress hormones that compromise the immune system, while also conditioning the lungs and respiratory tract, stimulating the lymphatic system to oust toxins from the body, and bringing oxygenated blood to the various organs to ensure their optimal function.
Yoga is more than a powerful way to relax -- it can transform your body, says Travis Eliot, a registered yoga teacher in Santa Monica. "Yoga has the potential to increase fat loss, develop muscle tone, and build flexibility, leading to a more lean-looking physique," he says.