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In addition to the physical benefits, yoga promotes mental fitness by encouraging you to focus your mind and turn your attention inward. Part of the mental exercise of yoga is focusing on yourself and maintaining each posture as best you can without being distracted by what your neighbor on the next mat is doing, even if he or she is a foot away. The ability to focus is an important benefit of yoga that carries over into other athletic activities and activities of daily life by helping you stay calm and cope with stress. As you develop your physical balance, you will experience a deeper sense of mental balance, too.
Even classes that are more physical, such as Ashtanga or power yoga classes, will end with a short period of relaxation and meditation and even a few minutes of allowing your mind to be quiet will contribute to your sense of well-being at the end of a yoga class.