- Gaiam Blog - http://blog.gaiam.com -
7 Steps to Set Your Yoga Practice Up for Success
Posted By Sara Fruman On January 7, 2014 @ 5:27 pm In Fitness, Yoga | 1 Comment
Beginning a yoga practice  can feel frustrating, stressful — maybe even boring! But stick with it. Coming back to your mat again and again will improve your body, mind and spirit beyond levels that you even dreamed imaginable.
Find a blissful yoga practice by following these simple steps:
Practice and then practice some more and then practice again. Yoga gets easier and more fulfilling the more you practice, and eventually it becomes an indispensable part of your day. I prioritize going to yoga like I prioritize going to work or drinking a cup of coffee in the morning — it is a necessity.
That’s not to say that you have to practice every day. But I’ve found that I begin to struggle to get back on my mat if I take more than three days off. Can’t make it to a class? No problem. Practice a few Sun Salutations  or follow along with a yoga video .
There are a lot of yoga teachers out there, and you’re not going to love them all equally. I’ve found that the yoga instructors who resonate with me the most have certain energy that I can’t clearly define. I just know it when I feel it! I recommend trying various classes and teachers  to discover who you click with.
Add variety to your practice. As with anything else, doing the same thing over and over again gets boring. Try different types of yoga , experience different instructors or add variations in class as you see fit. Living in Boulder with countless yoga options has made me a bit spoiled, so I try to go to each instructor’s class only once a week so I can have variety in my practice and not get burned out on my favorite teachers.
In yoga, there are often moments of stillness and silence. For many of us, silence can be torture. But focusing on the deep inhales and exhales in yoga helps to quiet the mind. When you find your mind racing, forget about the physical practice and bring your attention to your breath . It works!
Although yoga isn’t supposed to be competitive , yoga practitioners often find themselves trying to get into the posture a little bit deeper. That’s great — within limits. In your practice, focus on finding sensation and getting to your edge, but don’t go beyond it. That’s where injuries and frustration tend to bloom. Yoga is supposed to be a lifelong practice — don’t ruin your body by sinking into your joints or allowing yourself to feel actual pain.
Yoga is addicting, especially when you’re practicing regularly. However, when you find your body longing for rest and your mind is telling you that it would rather be anywhere else, take a break. Taking the day off can help rejuvenate your body and your enthusiasm to practice. Yoga should be something you love, not something you have to do.
Yoga’s a practice. That means that we are all just trying to improve ourselves. Trying new things can be messy, embarrassing and anything but graceful. I regularly fall on my back when practicing Handstand and sometimes completely lose track of which side we’re working on. That’s okay! We are all human. Greet your imperfections with a smile and don’t take yourself so seriously . Have fun, fall on your face and then do it again.
Article printed from Gaiam Blog: http://blog.gaiam.com
URL to article: http://blog.gaiam.com/7-steps-to-set-your-yoga-practice-up-for-success-in-2014/
URLs in this post:
 Image: http://blog.gaiam.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/yoga-practice-2014.jpg
 yoga practice: http://www.gaiam.com/yoga/?extcmp=life_prod
 Sun Salutations: http://life.gaiam.com/video/sun-salutation-how-rodney-yees-yoga-beginners
 yoga video: http://www.gaiam.com/yoga-videos/?start=0&sz=60&srule=Most%20Popular&extcmp=life_prod
 trying various classes and teachers: http://life.gaiam.com/article/finding-best-yoga-class-you
 different types of yoga: http://life.gaiam.com/article/beginners-guide-8-major-styles-yoga
 bring your attention to your breath: http://life.gaiam.com/article/what-sequential-breathing
 yoga isn’t supposed to be competitive: http://blog.gaiam.com/forget-envy-remember-who-you-are/
 don’t take yourself so seriously: http://blog.gaiam.com/yoga-why-so-serious/
 12 Tips for a Better Yoga Practice: http://blog.gaiam.com/12-tips-for-a-better-yoga-practice/
 Yoga for All Seasons: Winter: http://blog.gaiam.com/yoga-for-all-seasons-winter/
 Colleen Saidman’s Yoga for Weight Loss DVD: http://www.gaiam.com/colleen-saidman-yoga-for-weight-loss/05-59767.html?extcmp=life_prod
 Yoga for Beginners Kit: http://www.gaiam.com/yoga-for-beginners-kit/05-53724.html?extcmp=life_prod
 Banyan and Bo Premium Yoga Mat Sling: http://www.gaiam.com/banyan-%26-bo-premium-yoga-sling/05-60868.html?extcmp=life_prod
 Tree of Wisdom Yoga Mat: http://www.gaiam.com/tree-of-wisdom-yoga-mat/05-60520.html?extcmp=life_prod
Copyright © 2007 Gaiam Community Blog. All rights reserved.