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Natural Awakenings National

Sharper Image: Mind-Body Fitness Improves Our Point of View

Working out regularly and still not satisfied with your appearance? The culprit could be your exercise routine. A study published in Psychology of Women Quarterly suggests that women who practice mind-body disciplines like yoga, Pilates and martial arts are happier with how they look and have fewer symptoms of eating disorders than those who do aerobics.

According to study author Jennifer Daubenmier, Ph.D., a researcher at Preventive Medicine Research Institute in Sausalito, California, mind-body exercise teaches us to “listen” to our bodily sensations. “Because of this awareness, less importance is placed on outward appearance,” she notes.

Desiree Palanisamy, founder of Breathe Yoga, Pilates & Integrated Movement studio in Bay Shore, New York, adds, “In mind-body exercise studios we don’t use the mirrors you find in most aerobic settings, so you’re not constantly facing your physical self. The physical benefits simply come.”

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