Updated: Jul 11, 2020
Do you ever wonder why so many people are doing yoga these days ? Is it just to look good and show off fancy acrobatic poses as often portrayed in social media or so many magazines ? For some perhaps although that is not what yoga is really all about.
Initially, we may focus on the physical and mental benefits: strength, flexibility, balance, breathing, inner peace and a general sense of feeling good! The practice also teaches us to develop body awareness, mindfulness, calm, focus, concentration, stability, patience, perseverance, a sense of discipline, acceptance and ease with ourselves. These qualities we cultivate and practice on our mat are invaluable as we slowly start to apply them into our daily lives.
A regular practice will carry this state of being with us when we leave class, so it will have an impact on our own life and people around us spreading radiance, calm and positivity. It is subtle. The reason so many of us come back time after time to the mat is because it works at a deeper level. We may not see it immediately, yet we can sense it. It transforms us. It helps us restore ourselves.
Yoga is an all-natural happiness booster – you may notice that if you are feeling down, nothing helps more than a great yoga class – and happiness is actually a proven immune-booster too.
How we practice yoga matters. Perhaps you are more inclined towards a strong practice or a soft gentle one. Balance is key. Nature is a great teacher of yin and yang. As there is rain and sunshine, day and night, the moon and the sun, winter and summer, we too need to find balance in ourselves.
Changing our habits – even when our bodies are asking us to- can be challenging. The mind says: “I like it strong” or “I like it slow and gentle” but what does our body say ? To make the most of our energy, we can enhance our health and well-being with the right yoga practice for us at that time. Our body is always talking to us. We just need to tune in and listen to what it is trying to tell us.
By becoming aware of our energy levels and really acknowledging what we need in that moment, we can take action to ensure we feel at our very best. By becoming aware of how our bodies and minds respond to certain situations, we can begin to cultivate a life that serves us.
For me, yoga is about “undoing” going back to our natural state, restoring our free flow of vital energy and balance which brings us a sense of wellbeing. It is a form of healing, resetting ourselves physically and emotionally, thus restoring harmony.
Yoga means union, when body & mind become “one”, feeling whole and connected: to ourselves and the world around us. It brings us back home feeling grounded, nurtured and at peace.