File photo: Stephanie Klein-Davis/The Roanoke Times via AP
Cape Town – As tomorrow marks the International Day of Yoga, the Indian Consulate in Cape Town is inviting the public to celebrate the spiritual practice and enjoy its physical and mental benefits by participating in a mass free yoga event planned on top of Table Mountain. The event begins at 9.30am.

The consulate started celebrations for International Day of Yoga this year with a combined yoga session at the Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden last weekend, with about 150 participants.

More celebrations are planned atop Table Mountain tomorrow, at Newlands Cricket Stadium on Sunday and at the Samaj Centre in Rylands on June 29. 

International Day of Yoga aims to raise awareness worldwide of the many benefits of practising yoga. The theme for this year is “Climate Action”.

Yoga is an ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice that originated in India.

The word “yoga” derives from Sanskrit and means to join or to unite, symbolising the union of body and consciousness.

On December 11, 2014, the UN proclaimed June 21 as the International Day of Yoga. The draft resolution was proposed by India.

The proposal was first introduced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address during the opening of the 69th session of the General Assembly, in which he said: “Yoga is an invaluable gift from our ancient tradition.

Yoga embodies unity of mind and body, thought and action a holistic approach that is valuable to our health and our well-being. Yoga is not just about exercise; it is a way to discover a sense of oneness with yourself, the world and nature.”

The resolution noted “the importance of individuals and populations making healthier choices and lifestyle patterns”.

Yoga is said to help prevent psychosomatic disorders and to improve an individual’s resistance and ability to endure stressful situations.

The World Health Organisation has urged its member states to help their citizens reduce physical inactivity, which is among the top 10 leading causes of death worldwide, and a key risk factor for non-communicable ­diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes.

Last year, Guinness World Records recorded the largest yoga session with 100984 participants in India.

For free entry to the Newlands event, register at https://forms.gle/2Lu1gNVTvnu8Pw5R9

For more information, email: [email protected] or call 021 419 3110

Cape Times