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Time on your hands......?



Yoga during Lock Down

Attending a yoga class with an instructor is ideal for gaining experience with the discipline or deepening a pre-existing workout. However, with the current lock down restrictions, this is clearly not possible.

Nevertheless, it is possible to follow a solid workout that will benefit your mental and physical well-being in the comfort of your own home, or even outside in your garden.

There are plenty of online yoga classes, You Tube, even my own online streaming to follow but even these can take a commitment to engage and maintain. Alternatively, there are DVDs and books on the subject matter that will help develop your practice.

I would encourage you to develop your own home practice whilst we seemingly have time.

This may be the opportunity to make a small change to your life that could reap great reward.

Set goals for your yoga

Before you start doing yoga, it is advisable to understand why you want to practice the discipline. Yoga can be used as a method to train the body, a way to reduce and manage stress, a means of healing from an illness or injury, a way to achieve spiritual fulfilment and peace.

Think about your intention and you want to improve, such as strength, flexibility, endurance, fight against anxiety and depression. You may also want to practice for your general well-being.

You can write down the goals you have in mind for the program. Update them every time you cross a finish line and add new goals to constantly test yourself. For example, you may have a goal such as straightening the legs in a downward dog or holding a boat posture for a minute.

Find a comfortable place to practice it

You need a comfortable and quiet place to do yoga. Make sure you have enough room to move, top tip, check where your ceiling lights are!

On each side of the mat, calculate extra space to make sure you don’t hit a wall or anything, nominally 3m x 1m will give you the space you need

Make sure that the place you practice is quiet and peaceful, so that no one can disturb your concentration. In addition, it must be comfortable and not too cold.

If you haven’t a mat, drop me a line, I have some brand new studio mats for sale or some relatively good ‘seconds’.

Plan a home yoga practice

Although it may seem quite easy to practice yoga at home without too many problems, remember that it can be quite complicated, especially if you are not an expert yogi. Understanding the foundations of the discipline, from aligning the moves to the correct sequence of the various positions, can help you prepare for an effective and safe workout. I have some relatively safe, accessible routines on the website to follow, the videos will provide tips on alignment and foundation.

Be realistic with your ambition. When I started my home practice, I limited my time to 10 minutes, 3 times per week. In this time, I started with a gentle warm up and then repeating a set sequence of movements that stretched and flexed the main muscle groups. This, for me was sustainable. I continued to a month and my practice became a routine, even a habit. I will be happy to share my sequence if this is of interest.

In time, the sessions increased in duration and I started to bring more movements into the repertoire to both challenge me and draw me deeper into this mindful activity.

After familiarising yourself with a predetermined sequence, try to lengthen it by keeping each position a little longer and smoothly moving from one asana to another. Add new and more difficult positions as soon as you can.

My online yoga classes incorporate such repetitive sequences, and these may help anyone trying to develop their home practice.

Be patient and constant

This discipline has countless benefits, so with regular practice you can reap the rewards. Keep in mind that doing yoga doesn’t mean repeating a certain position exactly like the person you see in a video or image. You need to focus on the path that will take you to the asana, the enlightenment or any other goal that is proposed to you. Open your mind and heart during training. Good Luck!

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