I spent yesterday afternoon at the yoga studio in a home practice workshop. Since I’m watching my money lately, I signed up for morning classes 2 days a week but really you should practice at least 3 times a week and work up to every day, I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to motivate my home practice.
I have a whole bunch of great DVD’s that I use but sometimes I find that I get on my mat hit play and then can’t concentrate, get antsy and stop after only 1 pose. I can’t figure out why since I really love to do yoga it makes me feel better about myself and the state of my life and it also calms me down and gives me a good work out.
Yesterday I was hoping to come home with a routine, something I can do everyday no matter what, I was hoping to get step by step instructions on EXACTLY when to move from down dog into vera A and the order in which to do it. What I got was the realization that there is NO right way to do this, that it’s all an experiment in what feels right for your body and mind at that moment and that one day you might be in the best yoga form and the next day struggle with Tadasana, and this is OK!
Over the past 7 weeks I’ve been going to morning classes twice a week, every Tuesday and Thursday I get up at 6:15am (yes I know that ‘s not early for some of you but I don’t have kids so it’s early for me!) dress, have a little yogurt, get in my car in the dark and drive to class for 6:45. From 7-8:30 I listen to my teacher Pat lead us through a vigorous class – I’m usually sweating in the 1st 10 minutes, cooling us down for savasana (my favorite pose!) and then into a 5 minute meditation. I find my day is so much better after I do these classes.
A few years ago when I first met Pat, her classes used to be the same poses sometimes with slight variations a good workout and a solid basis for beginners for learning the poses, she is a fabulous teacher. NOW I have yet to take the same class – yes the basic poses are still there but she gets us in them and out of them in different way every time. We work towards different things and amazingly enough I’m finding that I’m able to do things that I haven’t been able to do since I was a kid (backbends spring to mind!). Even the teachers learn and grow more confident with their practice which they pass on to their students.
I guess what I picked up from yesterdays class is that you don’t have to be perfect all the time, that you need to listen to what your body is telling you for THAT moment and that’s FINE! You may have been able to do a head stand yesterday, doesn’t mean you can or should do it today, you should set an intention for your day and see how you can integrate it, and doing 5 minutes a day is better than doing none and eventually your body will tell you when it wants to move on.
In other words, Balance. I’m going to begin a meditation practice – it’s tougher than it sounds, I’m starting with 10 minutes a day, I’ve had some good instruction and I think it will help me keep the fragile balance I’m beginning to find.