Ask The Health Expert
Does yoga offer any real health benefits?
“Yes,” says Dr. Joseph Cole, a rehabilitation specialist at The Westchester Medical Group in Rye. “Yoga is good for increased flexibility, improved ranges of motion of most joints, and improved circulation. By stretching out the muscles, you’re increasing the blood flow to them. And also there’s the mental aspect of stress relief. Yoga has been shown to definitively decrease stress levels, and longterm, it can improve muscle coordination and posture.”
Still, Dr. Cole says, yoga should be part of—not your entire—exercise regimen. “Some patients I’ve seen are in great shape, they’re very flexible—almost hyper-flexible—but they have back pain because all they do is yoga. What they need is variety.”