Yoga For The Non-Yogi

Have you ever thought that yoga could be your thing? But when you hear someone talk about actually doing yoga, you run far, far away. The practice of yoga can be intimidating. Itconsists of many awkward poses in a room with people you have never met. Who would want to do that?

I’ll admit it; I never would have expected yoga to become “my thing.” I am a full on cardio girl. My workout motto has always been, the more you sweat, the better the workout. But enrolling in a yoga class this semester has opened my mind up.

At first I let the lack of flexibility stop me from becoming a yogi. But I quickly learned that basic yoga poses do not require large amount of flexibility. It is not until you work your way up to advanced poses that more flexibility is required. Continuing to practice yoga will allow you to become more flexible.

Even trying to start practicing yoga, you are going to feel defeated. Starting any new craft can be daunting. Every person on their yoga journey has started at the beginning stages.  The only way to move past the unnerving stages of yoga is to keep practicing.

The duration of your practice of yoga can last how long you want it to. This aspect of yoga is beautiful because it is what makes your yoga practice specially designed for you. Some days I find practicing 20 minutes of yoga will give me peace, while other days I may need about an hour.

Yogis are not the same. Every yogi practices differently. We may do some stretches and poses the same, but my downward dog definitely looks different than the person next to me.

One thing that I always seem to struggle with when practicing yoga is comparing myself to others. Yoga is more about finding your peace and finding you soul. One idea an instructor told me one time was “eyes on your own mat.” Yeah, sometimes my eyes do seem to wander off, but practicing yoga is for my own good.

This brings me to my next point. Who you are trying to impress while practicing yoga? The answer should be you. I am guilty for trying to do some yoga stretches I had no clue what to do. First, I almost hurt myself. Second, I looked even more stupid then just finding my inner peace. Remembering yoga is not about the poses that you can do, but it is more about how you go about doing it.

So the next time you walk past a fitness class with people twisted up in unimaginable ways, make your way in. Try not to judge hardcore yogis, instead ask questions. People who are spiritual in yoga are not superior to you. You still may think the practice of yoga is crazy after your first couple times, even some yogis think that, but it is relaxing for the mind and the body, and that works for me.

Namaste.