I am very careful to avoid any medical claims about yoga. I am not qualified to do so, and I think it’s just a different approach. However, I have observed the effects of yoga. I know people who have become less anxious, less depressed, more energized after a committed practice of yoga. I’m not sure that any other physical/mental/emotional exercises wouldn’t work equally as well, but yoga seemed to do the trick for them.
I’m posting a link to a Harvard Health Newsletter article of April 2009.
It discusses the positive impact of yoga on depression. Much of the improvement is attributed to breathing. To me, that means being at peace, taking a few minutes–literally a few minutes—each day to stop, and just listen. Listen to your breath, listen to your spirit, or your divine source.
The article is lengthy and has several citations. One yoga master who works with Yoga and Depression is Amy Weintraub. You can check her out on the web and on Amazon.