Yoga is an ancient practice and way of living, originating in India, developed to help us live better, so that we can feel healthier and happier, more at peace and in tune with ourselves and our life. It comprises practices involving the body and the mind, as well as lifestyle changes. It can do many different things, whether people's needs are physical, mental or spiritual, because it sees us in a holistic way, as complex creatures made up of body, breath and life-force, mind, personality, emotions and spirit. It has therefore evolved practices to help us in a multi-layered way. It has many 'tools', not just asana (bodily postures) and breathing practices, but also many different meditative techniques including mantra, the use of special phrases, for different purposes. All the practices are meditative. By that I mean that they bring us to a feeling of one-ness with our self and encourage us to live a more harmonious life. As well as practices 'on the mat', yoga gives us many ideas for that larger part of our life which is 'off the mat'. It gives great importance to the underlying attitudes that we have to life. Interestingly, many of its ideas are nlow being validated by scientific research.