Yoga is a discipline which encompasses physical, mental and spiritual practices. Dating back to pre-Vedic periods in Ancient India, it has recently made its way into Western culture as a medium of exercise and positive health promotion. Its main goal is considered to be liberation, which can be attained through various practices, sub-disciplines and creed-specific approaches.
Research has shown yoga to be an effective method for overcoming physical and mental illness, and its therapeutic roles can be used dependently or independently to conventional or alternative medical treatments. It is often used in conjunction with meditation and sessions include varying physical positions, the repetition of mantras and a relaxing atmosphere.