Is Yoga Good for Addiction Recovery?

Substance abuse is an all too common issue in today’s society. However, recovering from a drug or alcohol addiction is a difficult and expensive process that many people do not efficiently complete and thus end up with more addiction in the long run. While there are various types of therapies out there that can be beneficial to deal with substance abuse and the recovery time, there is one particular therapy that many people overlook when considering recovery. In this article, we will explore four reasons why yoga is beneficial for those recovering from substance abuse. Here is what you should note.

Increases Mindfulness

One of the most important parts of yoga is learning mindfulness. A combination of meditation and breathing is one way to help induce mindfulness and be aware of your body and the things happening inside your body. When recovering from substance abuse, mindfulness can be an important tool, especially if pain killers are the cause of the abuse due to chronic pain. Mindfulness helps bring a sense of awareness to the body, which can help combat stress and pain. Mindfulness can also bring awareness to cravings and addictive tendencies, which might better help an individual overcome those feelings. There are various programs like the mindfulness-based relapse program that helps those struggling with addiction to rewire their brain to avoid the relapse tendencies.

Reduces Stress

For some, the root of addiction is stress or anxiety related. Yoga is also a great tool for helping reduce

stress and breaking up the feelings of anxiety. Much like using mindfulness in yoga, the concept of breathing and movement combined to help reduce anxiety and stress. Yoga is also a form of physical fitness, and it has been shown countless times that physical fitness elevates the mood and produces endorphins that help combat stress in individuals. Yoga can also help reduce cravings that might lead to a relapse, no matter what the substance may be. By practicing yoga every day, you can also help reduce the symptoms of a mental disorder that might also induce a relapse of the substance being abused.

Focuses on the Breath

There are various types of yoga out there, but every type teaches the individual how to focus on the breath during the movements and poses. The breathing exercises are important for helping increase mindfulness, reduce stress, and even improve physical fitness. The breathing exercises can also be an influential part of avoiding an addiction relapse. Deep and mindful breathing can help improve relaxation, which can, in turn, help fight stress, and it can then help reduce the craving feelings that often result in relapse. Breathing can also be used during difficult times when the addiction craving comes crawling back. Just a few minutes of mindful breathing can be helpful in many ways.

Increases Physical Fitness

As mentioned before, yoga is also a form of physical fitness. Those that practice yoga on a regular basis, especially something like Hatha yoga that provides physical exertion to complete the pose, might find that yoga can improve their overall physical fitness. By inducing sweat and exertion, yoga can help boost those feelings of happiness and serenity. Yoga also includes the use of mental strength to help achieve the poses that produce such physical fitness. It is an effective way to exercise, but it has also been a proven way to help combat those cravings and things that might lead to a relapse.


Yoga is still becoming a new part of the Western world today, but it has been shown time and time again to have many benefits for the human body. Not only does it help with physical fitness and mindfulness, but yoga has also been used as an effective rehab treatment when it comes to dealing with the recovery of substance abuse. Using a combination of breathing techniques, meditation, and physical fitness, yoga is a proven method to help fight the cravings and reduce the chances of relapse. No matter the cause, yoga gets down to the cause of the problem that often leads to substance abuse, and it then seeks to help the individual throughout the recovery period and even after. The yoga recovery method is being used in various places right now, and with it, people are fighting their inner demons of substance abuse.