“In the beginning you have to make room for yoga in your daily life and give it the place it deserves. But after some time yoga itself will pull you up by the hair and make you do it.” – Vanda Scaravelli
The most important aspect of supporting a steady yoga practice is creating a daily habit at home. This is a difficult task when you lack motivation or don’t know where to begin.
So, I thought that I would take this opportunity to bring back some tried and true techniques for establishing a daily home practice:Find Your Yoga Place – Create a space that will always be available to you at your appointed time. Make sure it feels positive (non-cluttered, good temperature) and make it joyful – add flowers/candle/favorite object. If possible, pick a space that has low-pile carpet or wood flooring.
Establish a Consistent Schedule – Incorporate your practice into your routine and try to plan it for the same time each and every day. Maybe you aren’t a morning person – then be realistic with your timetable.
Limit Your Practice Time – Take no more than 20-30 minutes to practice each day. If you plan to meditate or do a restorative pose, you can reduce the time to 10 minutes. Try developing a music playlist for your practice. It is a great motivator and a good way to stick to your time frame.
Gather Your Props – Start with getting your own mat (not too thick or thin) that has adequate traction for standing poses. No other store-bought props are necessary to buy right away – a belt/robe sash, dense blanket and a stack of books can easily suffice for supporting your postures.
Get a Frame of Reference – Find a class to get your material for self practice. Start with what you know or feel confident doing. Videos/blogs will assist but studying with a teacher is the key to learning the postures correctly. Practicing with a friend can also be helpful for checking alignment and it creates incentive for keeping your practice!
Other Suggestions – Don’t worry if you miss a day. Just be sure to get back on your mat as soon as you can (in times of illness or travel, simply spend 5-10 minutes in Savasana). Speaking of Savasana (or final relaxation pose), please try to end each practice with this important posture. Not only is it the ideal way to cool down your muscles but it provides time for integration and is good preparation for meditation.
During the next two months, I will be providing some foundational asana sequences for you to explore in your home practice sessions.
Good Luck and Enjoy!