For more than five thousand years, Yoga has been an art that combines the strengthening of body and mind through deep breathing, meditation and relaxation...
- Its philosophy -
Everything done in Yoga, whether it is a posture, meditation, a mantra or a breathing technique (pranayama), is intended to encourage us to connect our body to the mindfulness. Yoga comes from a desire to understand ourselves and to free ourselves physically and emotionally.
As we practice, Yoga teaches us to link postures of various difficulties with greater ease, coordinated with our breathing, with the most serene mind possible.
- Its different forms -
There are over a hundred different forms of Yoga. And although there are many books and DVDs on the subject, it is worth investing to attend a few classes, with a good guide that can correct our postures.
The most famous yoga practices are :
- Its benefits -
Yoga has many physiological and psychological benefits…
FOR THE BODY :
FOR THE MIND :
- Its practice -
Sessions usually last between 45 minutes and 2 hours. Most instructors will offer us alternatives for difficult postures. As with all thing’s fitness, the more time we put into it, the more it will benefit us, so practicing a routine (three times a week) will help keep us going, while seeing improvements over time.
We can practice anywhere : at home, indoors or outdoors. Yoga is done barefoot on a (Yoga) mat. Even the most basic stretching requires clothing that will allow us to stretch, move, and get into position easily (without being bothered by them or revealing our entire underclothes anatomy). Not insignificant, we will have to leave our ego at the door, it is neither a competition nor a fashion show. If we wish, we can get a balance ball or Yoga circle, a block or two, and straps to help us pull our feet/legs, but these accessories are optional.
Certain things are expected of us, and even if these seem logical to the common mortals, here is a little reminder :
Each instructor has a unique approach :
Our experience, from one class to another, can be radically different, without especially being a different style of Yoga. So, let's not give up if we didn't enjoy our first session. Let's try to find a place and someone who makes us feel comfortable and confident.
A Yoga class is a time and a place where we are not judged : it does not matter if we do not achieve this or that movement, because it is more important to go at our own pace to make sure we do things right, than trying to impress everyone.
It is not necessary to know the names of the postures to participate, most instructors provide clear explanations, as well as advice for positioning and breathing to join.
At the end of the session, it is common to see people do without Savasana, on the pretext that we are just lying on the ground. Savasana is important because this is when our body and nervous system relax and rejuvenate, before we plunge back into the hustle and bustle of our lives.
- Physical condition -
If we are a beginner, if we have health problems, if we suffer from hypertension, diabetes or heart problems, we must consult our doctor before starting, because some postures and practices may not be indicated for us.
If we are pregnant, prenatal Yoga (not hot Yoga) can help us stay relaxed, strong and fit. Some adjustments may be necessary as our baby grows. Also, it should not be forgotten that our centre of gravity will shift throughout pregnancy. And we shouldn't try to stretch further than we did before pregnancy, because as the pregnancy hormones relax the joints, we could hurt ourselves.
When we practice, we are in our body, on our mat, in our personal experience and we explore the different layers of our person. Ideally, this trip is to be lived with open arms, mind and heart.
And while it's true that it takes years of practice to master a full sequence, yoga is still an excellent choice if we want a holistic approach to strength our body and our mind.
What do you think?