HOW TO: Begin an at-home yoga practice

An at-home yoga practice is a great way of incorporating yoga into your daily life without having to schedule an entire morning or afternoon trying to get to a class. If you live in a small town, or a rural area, it can be especially hard to keep the yoga up without a yoga community close by.

Implementing your own personal practice takes persistence and commitment, but with these simple steps you can create and sustain your personal practice and reap the many benefits yoga has to offer, from the comfort of your own home!

  1. Create Your Space

Setting up a space dedicated to your yoga practice is a great way of cementing the activity into your daily routine. Starting is as simple as rolling out your yoga mat and KEEPING IT OUT! Your yoga space can be a corner in your bedroom, in your lounge or living room, in the backyard, or if you’re lucky enough to have the space, a whole room dedicated to your yoga practice. Dedicating an area to your yoga practice helps to manifest your intention and creates a space of safety and sanctuary.

  1. Dedicate Time

Making the time to practice and actually scheduling your yoga sessions makes yoga something that you do, not something that you wish you did. Even if your ‘yoga-time’ is only 20 minutes in the morning before work or school, you will most definitely notice the benefits of incorporating a regular session into your day.

  1. Be Realistic & Listen to Your Body

Beginning any routine can be daunting. Picking a style of yoga that suits you and being realistic about your expectations in the beginning can help create a sustainable practice. Listening to your body and respecting injuries or limitations within yourself gives you the opportunity to explore the Self and embrace yoga as more than just a physical practice. Yoga is not meant to be a competitive practice, and pushing yourself too hard can result in injury, as with any physical activity. Respect your limitations.

  1. Keep It Simple

At first, having a set sequence or routine makes starting your at-home practice a breeze. Once you become familiar with poses and sequencing, you can create your own routines and find your way in your practice. Incorporating Sun Salutations and some basic poses in the beginning creates a solid foundation for you to expand upon in your personal practice, and makes for a well-rounded, full-body workout.

  1. Remember That Yoga Isn’t Just Stretching

To the untrained eye, yoga may seem to be just a stretch session. Spending 30 minutes laying in Savasana (Corpse Pose) might not seem like much of a practice to someone who doesn’t practice yoga, but if your body is craving this pose, and you are open to dealing with all of the emotional gunk that can come up in Savasana, then by all means, DO IT! Yoga is about honouring the body, and the physical postures are just one facet of the yoga system, and letting your body guide you through your practice is imperative.

Incorporating some or all of these points in the beginning can help create a sustainable and mindful practice, and will help you on your way to establishing a regular yoga practice at home.

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