Why is now a good time to practise yoga?
I have had a number of people getting in touch with me recently, who have practised yoga before and are keen to get back to it. And they are not sure how to go about it.
The regular yoga practice they enjoyed earlier in their lives may have been pushed aside as commitments grew, children arrived, work pressures increased or caring commitments took over. These things happen and when we find we suddenly have space to breathe, think and reflect, we realise what we are missing.
In the current situation your regular face to face yoga sessions may have been replaced by Youtube videos or zoom classes and if you are not able to access these easily then you probably feel in need of guidance.
The most important thing to remember is that after a break in your yoga practice, your body will probably have changed. So you are unlikely to slot back into your old practice routines. Health conditions affect the body, childbirth can alter a woman’s body, a more sedentary lifestyle may lead to tension and tightness. And if you have been involved in active sports such as running or cycling, then your body will have become stronger and more muscular and probably less flexible.
In yoga, we try to achieve a balance between strength and flexibility, energy and calm, an awareness of what is around us and personal, quiet focus. And a regular practice helps us to achieve this.
So, for those of you who would like to return to yoga and who can’t access online resources, what should you do?
Reflect on your previous yoga practice and identify three simple postures you can recall in detail and practise them as if you had never done them before – with your new and different body. Avoid stronger, advanced poses – go back to basics and be open minded and explore how your different body responds to the gentle stretch of, for example,
Triangle (Trikonasana) or to a easy, seated forward stretch. And always begin with Tadasana, the Mountain (standing) pose. I often say to my clients that when practised well, with precision and serenity, this pose is all you need. So just find a quiet spot, stand in Tadasana, relax your shoulders, align your feet, watch your breathing become lighter and experience the quietness of yoga.
If you’d like to discover more, do tune in to the Georgy Jamieson show on Saturday mornings on BBC Radio Suffolk at 11.40am for Yoga on the Radio where I guide listeners through a simple posture each week. And you can learn yoga with me during lockdown – more details are on my website at izzyyoga.co.uk, or call 01473 625115, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m also on Instagram – look for Izzy_Yoga.
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