If you’ve never been in a yoga class that incorporates OM-ing in the practice, or if you’ve just never felt comfortable or confident enough to join in, why not try it next time you practice at home?
It certainly can seem daunting or perhaps even a little odd the first time you do it and I’ve even seen people giggle uncomfortably the first time they encounter OM but here are just a few reasons why you should give it a go.
1) OM is the sound of the universe. It is infinity. It covers the range of all sounds and all languages in the same vibrational frequency found throughout nature. This has a highly therapeutic effect on the body and the mind.
2) By chanting OM at the beginning and end of your practice you’ll be calm, focused and balanced. OM helps clear our minds and helps our bodies relax by resonating throughout which can help ultimately lead to clarity and concentration on the mat and beyond.
3) OM can help decrease your blood pressure by relaxing your entire body which has the overall effect of improving your heart health and your health in general.
4) By confidently saying OM you surrender to anxiety and move through your breath, energy and physical awareness in a way you probably wouldn’t be able to during any other part of your day.
5) Saying OM after a series of deep inhales/exhales silences your mind and helps you reconnect your body with your breath and your soul.
6) Chanting OM can help release stress and tension by purifying the mind with positive thoughts. As we chant OM we are exhaling slowly and deeply whilst relaxing our brain which forces us to let go of any tension or worries we might have been holding inside.
7) OM can help improve breathing, congestion and throat ailments as the sound vibrates gently from the back of your throat massaging the area all around your throat, lungs, neck, nose and mouth.
8) OM helps establish ‘me’ time. It defines the beginning and ending of your yoga practice and/or relaxation session by subconsciously resetting your mind and clearing your thoughts.
9) By saying OM we are leading ourselves on a path of self-realisation and perhaps sending ourselves out of our comfort zone. By pushing these boundaries we not only improve our self-confidence and feelings of self-worth but also our feeling of oneness with the world. This feeling starts on the mat for many but extends far outside your yoga practice.
10) OM is empowering. When you let go of any hangups or weirdness you might have felt associated with OM-ing the very first time you tried it you will feel amazing.
The first time you ‘OM’ confidently without opening your eyes to see if anyone is watching is a real achievement. Especially when you try chanting in a group environment, whether with complete strangers or your best friends, you will find the energy of everyone saying OM at the same time is hard to beat.