Ben Shoval is a successful finance, technology, and real estate entrepreneur based in Seattle, Washington, where he serves as president of his firm, Shoval & Co. In his leisure time, Ben Shoval is an avid yoga practitioner.
While yoga may be an ancient practice, modern times have seen many different styles of undertaking it come into the forefront. Here’s a quick primer on three of the more popular yoga types:
Anusarya yoga was conceived by John Friend, an American practitioner, in 1997 and is one of the newer variations. Anusarya is based on the premise that all people are filled with an intrinsic goodness, and incorporate specific sequences intended to help students open their hearts, encounter grace, and shine their inner goodness.
Ashtanga is rooted in ancient teachings, which saw its western prominence rise in the 1970s. It is an intense yoga style that follows a specific sequence of postures that are always performed in the same order. It is typically regarded as one of the more demanding practices.
Vinyasa is similar to Ashtanga in that it is rigorous, but unlike the former, it is not predicated on a specific sequence of movements, but is set to music and focuses on smooth transitions from pose to pose. Where Ashtanga values consistency, Vinyasa values spontaneity.
A successful entrepreneur, Benjamin (Ben) Shoval currently oversees his firm Shoval & Co. while also pursuing a longtime interest in technology. Ben Shoval balances his professional endeavors with a number of additional interests, such as yoga.
According to an article in Yoga Journal, research suggests that the benefits of yoga are enhanced when yogis practice in nature. The article cites a Swedish study that found viewing nature, particularly the organic patterns in trees and other plant life, can increase central components of a fulfilling yoga practice, including internal focus and wakeful relaxation.
Along with these benefits, Amos Clifford, who leads the Association of Nature & Forest Therapy, asserts that transitioning from a yoga studio to an outdoor setting can help yogis increase their confidence and reinterpret their practice. The article also refers to field studies in Environmental Health and Preventative Medicine indicating that people in forest environments have reduced concentrations of cortisol, a stress hormone, in comparison to people in urban environments.
Benjamin “Ben” Shoval is an entrepreneur who has successfully built businesses in industries ranging from housing to computer training. As part of his routine to stay healthy, Ben Shoval practices yoga.
Yoga has many benefits. Perhaps one of its primary benefit is that almost anyone can practice it. Like any other physical activity, individuals with extreme conditions may need to seek a physician’s clearance before engaging in it. Overall, however, most of the general population can practice it, and poses can be modified to suit one’s capabilities. Yoga is not out to make people perform pretzel-like poses.
Yoga’s relaxation techniques can help to reduce chronic pain, such as arthritis, headaches, carpal tunnel syndrome, and lower back pain. Other physical benefits include increased flexibility, improved respiration, increased muscle tone and strength, improved vitality and energy, reduction in weight, and better athletic performance.
Some may even value more the mental benefits that yoga brings, as it can help people manage stress. Stress can have severe negative effects on our mind and body. It manifests itself in a variety of ways such as sleeping problems, concentration difficulties, back pain, headache, and drug abuse. Yoga promotes coping skills and can help people look at life in a more positive way.