The term 'yoga' translates as 'yoke' or 'union', referring to the union of mind, body & soul. However the actual definition of yoga may mean something different for each individual. Yoga really is whatever you want it to be, whether that may be simply a flexibility exercise, or a deeper ritual for inner fulfilment, self discovery & well-being. As an ancient practice, originating in Northern India approx 5000 years ago, the longstanding benefits of yoga are apparent. Having evolved over the generations with a western approach for most, the traditional intentions of yoga remain.
It is a unique practice that strengthens & balances both body & mind. It encourages a happier & healthier way of living whereby the benefits are to be experienced both on & off the mat as an everyday lifestyle.
There are so many different styles & approaches to yoga, some more spiritual, some more physical. You will never come across the same yoga teacher. There is no one size fits all, therefore, if yoga is something you're interested in trying as a complete beginner, I'd highly recommend trying different classes & styles until you find exactly what feels right for you.
What does yoga mean to you? Have you tried it yet? If you haven't, ask yourself why not? There isn't a single negative side affect to be had, you have nothing to lose other than negative thoughts and possibly tight hamstrings... (which can only be a positive, right?!)