Community yoga classes – Starting community yoga classes can be challenging and for many, frustrating. Somehow the dishes or email or even cleaning a closet can take priority over a home yoga practice. By practicing a little Ahimsa (nonviolence to the self and others) practitioners can find a practical, easy to implement solution. Much like finding a style of yoga or a yoga teacher that feels right, developing community yoga classes routine requires an open heart and a willingness to experiment.
The first suggestion of course is to get up earlier than usual (for most) and do sun salutations with the rising of the sun. If that’s not in the cards, try one or more of the daily yoga practice suggestions below.
Make Yoga Part of the Morning Routine
When beginning a community yoga classes, begin by taking note of any household pets and their morning behavior. There probably isn’t a healthy cat on the planet who doesn’t stretch just after it wakes up or a dog that doesn’t stick its rear up and out before they really get moving for the day.
Just before breakfast, start off with a few simple stretches that work all 6 directions of the spine and remember to take deep ujayi breaths: breathing in and out through the nose-dragging the breath along the back of the throat (aim for a quiet Darth Vader type sound). Be sure to let the belly expand on the inhale and draw it back toward the spine on the exhale.
In conjunction, try doing a difficult yoga pose and a simple yoga pose each day. This approach connects nicely with the term “Hatha” (ha-tha), which means sun and moon and is the primary school of yoga practiced in the west. Having a more difficult pose in a daily yoga routine will initiate the sun energy, while a more relaxed, favored pose will invoke the more yin, moon energy. This approach will keep the daily practice both challenging and nourishing.
Establishing a Community Yoga Classes
Another great tip is to allow a certain amount of time each day for home yoga practice. Using formal or informal yoga poses (poses that might not be in any book but the body position feels good) devote 7 minutes a day and then gradually work up to 15 or 30.
The best part about this home yoga practice technique is that once you get going it gets harder and harder to stop! So yoga becomes an enjoyable way to begin the day.
How to Pick a Yoga Pose
It all starts with a morning stretch while the tea or coffee pot is brewing: Possibly a leg stretch using the kitchen counter or an arm stretch overhead. Once out of the kitchen, try unfurling the yoga mat and sitting on it while having the beverage.
Inspiration almost always strikes and the mug gets set aside for a downward facing dog or bridge pose. The important thing for this technique is to allow time for the practice to unfold organically. Have a sip, do a pose. Many yoga practitioners find that eventually, the body will crave another pose and the process will simply unfold.
Yoga and Breathing Techniques
A particularly effective technique is to aim for 108 deep breaths, let your body find the poses while naturally staying focused on deep, mindful breathing. For each active pose there should be either an in-breath or an out breath: Sun salutations or standing pose are ideal.
For lower energy days don’t be afraid to use floor poses like thread the needle or rotated stomach pose. Hold each pose for 5-10 breaths and make sure the count is equal for both sides. The emphasis here is to have 108 full breaths using any yoga poses along the way. The poses are secondary. The body will follow suit and before long you are 15 minutes into an enlivening practice!
Guided Community Yoga Classes Practice
For newer practitioners there are several great yoga videos available. The local library may have some available for preview or rental services like Netflix are a great way to decide which home practice yoga video is the best fit.
Many yoga enthusiasts will seek out videos that have short segments 15-20 minutes or focus on specific sets of poses. This format offers a thorough practice without a 1 hour obligation for a full class. Working up to the full yoga practice on the video is also an excellent strategy to enhance yoga at home.
Everything is Yoga – Stretch Throughout the Day
Dancers, yogis and athletes can all be found stretching their limbs throughout the day. Rather than limiting yoga practice to the morning, try a few simple neck stretches in traffic or a few rounds of breath of fire just before the afternoon meeting.
Use Malasana (the squat pose) to pick something up from the floor or assume the sky reaching pose (arms over head) while stretching from side to side before sitting down to check email. Ankle roles are also inconspicuous during conference calls. There are countless ways to incorporate yoga into a daily home (or office) practice: intention and creativity are key.
Ultimately, everything is yoga (union) so developing a home yoga practice is just another step on the path to becoming a more creative and consciously alive being.