In the present times, yoga is mistakenly understood as another form of exercise. It is also understood as physical techniques that work in order to gain flexibility in the body.
But in reality, Yoga is the complete science of mind, body and their coordination. The word Yoga comes from the sanskrit word “yog” which is derived from the root “yuj” which means “to join” or “to integrate”. Yoga aims to connect individual’s fluttering mind with its innermost silent restful state. This is achieved by meditation. There is a deep intimate relationship between the mind and the body. The body is thoroughly surrounded by muscular system. When mind attains a rested state then the body also starts to gain deep relaxation. Thereby various muscles in the body gain relaxation allowing the flexible movement of the muscles.
To maintain the position of any part of the body we need two sets of muscles on both sides of the limb. It is the balance between the two sets of muscles which determines the position of the limb. For example, if the body has to be turned towards left then the muscles towards the left are forced to contract in the case of exercise ; whereas, in the case of yoga, the same result of bending the body towards left is achieved by not contracting the muscles on the left but by relaxing the muscles on the right side. And this relaxation of muscles depends on relaxation of the mind. So the key to flexibility in the body lies in the mind.