Week 2, Day 4: Why I love yoga

It makes me so sad when I hear people say they are not good at yoga. Yoga is so much more than being flexible, in fact, the positions are only one of the 8 elements that form the yoga path. The others include a set of moral rules to live by: non-violence, truthfulness, self-study to name but a few, as well as mindfulness and meditation. The asanas (or positions) are designed to keep your body in good condition with the purpose of being able to stay in mediation for long periods. So really someone who is good at yoga is someone who is a good person who meditates as well as practices!

That said, practising yoga is incredibly fulfilling. The positions are designed to nurture the body while increasing flexibility and strength. You can't be bad at it, as it is a journey and no-one ever finishes yoga! If you continue to practice, you will notice small changes to your body, the more you practice the quicker these will come. Be kind to yourself, don't overstretch, your muscles want to protect themselves and your joints so listen if they complain.

Your body carries the story of your life, and so some areas might be stiff or tight for a reason. People store emotional pain in their hips and burdens on their shoulders. It is common for an emotional release to happen when these areas are worked on. I remember one day during my teacher training, we had been doing some intense hip opening, and during practice, the next morning half the class were in floods of tears!

The most important thing is to enjoy the process, you might have days when you don't want to, but those are probably the days when you need it the most, and you will get the most out of your practice.

Lastly, I have a slight confession…. Although we sold this journey as finding happiness, I have used a little poetic licence. Part of the yoga philosophy is about finding contentment, and that is really what we are aiming for. The thought behind that is that happiness is fleeting, whereas you can live your life being content. You just have to be happy with what you've got and who you are - sounds like the perfect thing to aim for right?

Today's task is to try out this yoga routine. Doesn't matter how close you are to getting it, how flexible or stiff you are, if you can listen to your body and enjoy the process you are winning!

Have a great day and don't forget to fill in your diary! xxx

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