15 Yoga Quotes to Inspire Yogis on Their Journey
Yoga is a secret weapon for health and wellness for people of all fitness levels. Here are yoga quotes to inspire and motivate you.
Yoga: A secret weapon for wellness
In a world of magic diet pills and quick exercise fixes, it’s easy to be skeptical. But if you’re looking for a “biohack” that really might help you live to 100, there is one trend that lives up to the hype.
Yoga is a secret weapon for improving your mental and physical health, says Vernon Williams, MD, a neurologist, pain specialist, and founding director of the Center for Sports Neurology and Pain Medicine at Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute in Los Angeles. “It’s a great exercise because you don’t need any equipment, you can do it anywhere, anytime, and it works for people of any fitness level,” he says.
The benefits of practicing yoga
Doing some yoga or gentle stretching every day is a powerful weapon against anxiety and depression and can help you feel more centered, Dr. Williams says. Plus, yoga has been shown to offer physical benefits, including a stronger immune system, less inflammation, more energy, less chronic pain, stronger muscles, improved balance, and better heart health. And for those who struggle with fatigue, you can energize with yoga.
The best part? You don’t have to be a yogi, go to a fancy retreat, or do hours of hot yoga every day to get all these benefits. And forget the myth that you have to be ultra-flexible to do yoga.
“Even if you do just 15 to 30 minutes a day, you start to see improvements,” Dr. Williams says, adding that the key is to do what feels best for your body rather than attempting all the acrobatic poses you see on Instagram. In fact, simply sitting and doing focused breathing exercises is a form of yoga.
To help inspire you to hit the mat (or just a comfy spot on your floor), we’ve found some powerful quotes about yoga and its many benefits.
You don’t have to be Gumby
“Yoga is not about touching your toes, it’s about what you learn on the way down.”—Unknown
One of the most common myths about yoga is that unless you’re flexible, you can’t do it. The truth is that yoga is one of the most accessible types of exercise for people of all ages, fitness levels, and stages of life—from pregnant women to the elderly. Make sure you don’t fall for these myths you shouldn’t believe about fitness after 50.
Find your own peace
“All kidding aside, if everyone did yoga, we’d have world peace.”—Rory Freedman, author and health coach
Peace of any sort can be hard to come by these days. But no matter what’s in the news or happening around you, you can use yoga to find a sense of inner peace. To help you focus, use these meditation quotes.
Bring in energy
“Yoga means addition—addition of energy, strength, and beauty to body, mind, and soul.”—Amit Ray, Indian author and spiritualist
Some workouts can leave you feeling exhausted afterward. But yoga usually leaves you feeling energized and recharged, making it the perfect way to start your day. As soon as you hop out of bed, start with these energizing morning stretches to jump-start your day.
Yoga is for everybody and every body
“Anybody can breathe, therefore anyone can practice yoga.”—T.K.V. Desikachar, yoga teacher and guru
You don’t have to know a downward-facing dog from an upward-facing dog to get started. People hear the funny names of the poses or see the intimidating-looking studios and think yoga is an exclusive club. It’s not, as shown by these easy yoga poses you can do every day.
Take care of your back
“Yoga is the fountain of youth. You’re only as young as your spine is flexible.”—Bob Harper, celebrity fitness trainer and host of The Biggest Loser
Back pain is one of the most common health complaints and can be one of the hardest to treat, Dr. Williams says. While yoga can’t fix a back injury (always talk to your doctor about back pain), it can help reduce pain and increase your core strength to take pressure off your back. If you suffer from back pain, make sure you’re avoiding these habits that are damaging your spine.
Stay focused on the present
“Yoga begins right where I am—not where I was yesterday or where I long to be.”—Linda Sparrowe, yoga writer and teacher
One of the quickest ways to bring on anxiety is to ruminate over the past or worry about the future. The meditation technique of learning to stay focused on the present moment can help bring you peace and free you from fear and worry. Here are some meditation tips to help you get started.
Transform your mind and body
“Yoga does not transform the way we see things, it transforms the person who sees.”—B.K.S. Iyengar, founder of the Iyengar style of yoga
There’s a reason people talk about yoga “flow.” This exercise has the ability to transform not just your body, but the positivity that flows into every aspect of your life. Start with this simple 10-minute yoga workout at home.
Find happiness on the mat
“You’re only one yoga class away from a good mood.”—Unknown
Yoga is a simple, but powerful way to help with depression and improve your sense of happiness and well-being. Science agrees: Research, including a review of studies published in 2017 in the Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine, suggests yoga is an effective form of treatment for depression.
Practice makes perfect
“Yoga is the practice of quieting your mind.”—Patanjali, author of The Yoga Sutras
Quieting your mind sounds easy in theory, but can be quite difficult to do in practice. If you want to get good at it, practicing yoga—a form of meditation—is a powerful tool for learning to quiet your mind.
With awareness comes light
“The nature of yoga is to shine the light of awareness into the darkest corners of the body.”—Jason Crandell, yoga and meditation expert
Self-awareness is one of the first steps to improving yourself. Acknowledging your strengths and weaknesses can help you know where to start and yoga is a great way to become more self-aware. If you’re nervous about trying it, check out these 12 things yoga instructors wish you knew.
“Yoga is essentially a practice for your soul, working through the medium of your body.”—Tara Fraser, yoga teacher and author
The soul is an oft-neglected aspect of health, probably because it’s so hard to define and each person’s experience is different. However, yoga is a type of soul food that can help you learn what motivates you and strengthens that inner sense of self. This is just one of the surprising benefits of yoga.
Loving starts with the self
“It doesn’t matter how deep into a posture you go—what does matter is who you are when you get there.”—Max Storm, breathing teacher, speaker, and author
Learning to love your body, instead of criticizing it, is powerful medicine. Yoga can help you do exactly that. Not sure how to love your body, warts and all? Start with these five ways to achieve body acceptance.
“You spend so much time in your head in life. And what yoga does is, it asks you to allow your head to be quiet, to allow it to be still, just for an hour and a half. Just deal with your body and your breath.”—Colin Farrell, actor
The quieter you become, the more you can hear. We live in a very noisy world but silence can be powerful. (Here are the things that happen to your body after just 15 minutes of meditation.)
It’s a skill
“The word ‘yoga’ means skill—skill to live your life, to manage your mind, to deal with your emotions, to be with people, to be in love, and not let that love turn into hatred.”—Sri Chinmoy, Indian spiritual leader and meditation expert
Yoga is a physical exercise, but the skills it teaches—like balance, self-acceptance, breathing, focus, and strength—can be applied to many areas of your life. If you’re looking to lose weight, try these yoga poses for weight loss.
Who you really are
“Yoga is not about self-improvement, it’s about self-acceptance.”—Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa, prenatal yoga pioneer
We are all deeply flawed—it’s the nature of human existence. Happiness comes not from ignoring or trying to fix all our flaws, but from learning to accept where we are while we learn. (If you suffer from bloating or tummy aches, try these yoga stretches for digestion.)
- Vernon Williams, MD, a neurologist, pain specialist, and founding director of the Center for Sports Neurology and Pain Medicine at Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute in Los Angeles
- Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine: "The Efficacy of Yoga as a Form of Treatment for Depression"