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Indian Consulate General holds 1st International Yoga Day in Ho Chi Minh City

Indian Consulate General holds 1st International Yoga Day in Ho Chi Minh City

Sunday, June 21, 2015, 16:51 GMT+7

The Consulate General of India on Sunday organized the first International Day of Yoga in Ho Chi Minh with the participation of over 3,000 foreign and Vietnamese people at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District.

The event is part of the 2015 International Day of Yoga held simultaneously in many cities worldwide after the United Nations General Assembly declared June 21 as the International Day of Yoga with the approval of 177 out of the 193 UN member countries and territories on December 11, 2014, following a call from Indian Prime Minister Neranda Modi.

"Yoga is an invaluable gift of India's ancient tradition. It embodies the unity of minds and bodies; thoughts and actions; restraint and fulfillment; harmony between man and nature; and a holistic approach to health and well-being. It is not about exercise but about discovering the sense of oneness within yourself, the world and nature,” Prime Minister Modi said at an event organized at the UN General Assembly to call for the adoption of June 21 as the International Day of Yoga.

At the Ho Chi Minh City event, the Vietnam Book of Records organization also recognized a record for the biggest number of people practicing yoga at a time in the Southeast Asian country.

Yoga practitioners will feel a harmony in his or her body and mind, in which everything seems to blend together, regardless of race, religion, and ethnicity, and studies have shown that yoga works to heal the mind and body, according to Smita Pant, Indian Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City.

Also on this occasion, Pant called for yoga centers to run classes for free for one month so that many more Vietnamese people and expats will have the opportunity to practice it.

Vietnamese people tend to care for their spiritual life, respect spiritual values, and try to live in harmony with nature, the core virtues yoga brings to human beings, Pant told Tuoi Tre News.

Many people think of yoga as an acrobatic activity or conventional physical exercise, but yoga is indeed at a higher level, it is the harmony between bodies and minds, she added.

Nguyen Thi Thu Hai, a Vietnamese guru, said after seven years practicing yoga, she realized that it has helped her reduce stress and induced physical changes – straightening her backbone which was a little hunched before she began her yoga training.

“My physical health has also improved vastly during the period,” she added.

Yoga is a great activity for health, especially mental one, said Bhagirathi Sethi, who has taught yoga for more than 20 years.

While many other sporting activities are of great benefit to physical health, yoga is not only good for it but also for internal organs, like the lungs and heart, according to Sethi, who has a PhD in yoga and natural therapy.

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A Vietnamese woman is seen at the first International Day of Yoga held by the Consulate General of India in Ho Chi Minh City at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District on June 21, 2015.

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Two western women practice a yoga exercise during the first International Day of Yoga organized at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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An Australian practitioner is seen practicing a yoga exercise during the first International Day of Yoga held at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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A foreign woman, standing among many Vietnamese people, does an intensive yoga exercise during the first International Day of Yoga held at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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People raise their arms simultaneously during the first International Day of Yoga held at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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A foreign man practices a perfect yoga technique during the first International Day of Yoga held at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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A local woman takes a picture of her friend who is performing a yoga exercise during the first International Day of Yoga at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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This Vietnamese man was interrupted by a phone call when joining the first International Day of Yoga at the Stadium of Military Zone No. 7 in Tan Binh District, Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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He continued after answering his call.

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A small child adopts a strange yoga posture when people around her are taking up another.

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She takes a rest right at her spot after that.

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A Vietnamese woman practices a perfect technique.

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An elderly Vietnamese woman is seen at the first International Day of Yoga in Ho Chi Minh City on June 21, 2015.

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Smita Pant (R, 2nd), Indian Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City, poses for a picture with many Indian and Vietnamese yoga teachers and trainers for the record acknowledged by the Vietnam Book of Records organization for the biggest number of people practicing yoga at a time in the Southeast Asian country.

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Thoai Tran - Binh Minh/Tuoi Tre News

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