I just wanted to start off by saying yoga is what ever you want it to be, there's no right or wrong way of practicing yoga. But the number one misconception people think yoga is just solely about is...
Yoga is Just Stretching
Well, yes. And no. One aspect of yoga is stretching but that’s only a tiny part of it.
When I decided to take yoga for the first time, that’s all I thought yoga was about – improving my flexibility and trying to get my mind to think of nothing.
I didn’t go back to yoga for a while after that but, when I did, I came into it with a different mindset – healing.
When you're dealing with stress, depression, anxiety and more; let's be honest, it begins to take a toll on health.
In a world so rushed as it is today, constantly moving, thinking and worrying...
... when was the last time you took a moment out of your day to just sit in silence, close your eyes, take deep breaths and think of nothing for at least 10 minutes?
Yoga helps remind you to slow down and analyze yourself.
Even though you put your body into weird positions, it’s about the art of healing, finding your inner strength and the art of getting to know yourself better, both body and mind.
We’ve American-ized the word yoga and what’s it’s about. If you take the time to learn about the origins of yoga – which is in India – you’d be infatuated.
I also just wanted to make a note here: When your yoga teacher tells you to think of nothing. That's not necessarily what she means. It simply means, if a thought pops up, don't think anything of it - just observe it and then let it pass. Of course, you want to be focusing on your breathing and your intention for your practice that day.
During a yoga practice you’re improving all the systems of the body. From the muscular system to the skeletal system to the respiratory system, the list goes on. Yoga can both prevent disease and help you recover from it.
The meaning of the word “yoga” is “union”. And your mind, body and spirit will work together to heal and strengthen. Hence, the word union.
Yoga is all about being in the present moment. It teaches you to be in the now. If you're living in the past it usually causes depression; if you're living in the future this can often cause anxiety.
Focusing on the present opens a way to improve concentration, coordination, happiness, reaction-time and memory.
So next time you walk into a yoga class, go into the studio with the mindset of healing - whether that be emotional, mental, physical, spiritual, whatever you feel you need the most attention that day.
I recommend learning about the 7 chakras. This is a very useful tool in your yoga practice.
The Foxy Team
The beautiful yogi model is Stephanie Love
Stephanie teaches here at Foxy Fitness Studio and Pole
See ya on the mat!