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Yoga can get mistaken for just a physical practice. Yoga is so much more than that. Even if you are just starting out practicing yoga to gain the physical benefits, it is very rare that you don’t discover that there is much more to it.
I believe that yoga is a tool that we can use to focus our mind. Wherever you live – Vancouver, Bali, Thailand, Toronto, Hawaii, New Zealand, Sydney, Calgary, Perth, Brisbane, Melbourne – when we take a step back from our busy lives to breathe, and move, it takes away all of the other distractions, and it allows us to discover parts of yourself that we could sometimes overlook.
At times yoga can be an emotional journey. With the busy lives we live, it is rare that we take the time to really sit with ourselves. To be in the present moment. Doing so can open up the door to many different emotions. During your yoga practice these emotions are something that you have to allow yourself to feel and work through.
Yoga also gives us the opportunity to really accept where we are in the present moment. With a daily practice, you are able to understand that you aren’t able to push your body into a place that it isn’t physically able to go.
You have to accept where you are today, in this exact moment. You aren’t able to rush through, or to physically make yourself do an asana if your body isnt ready. I think that can be very humbling.
Yoga is referred to as a practice, because it is something that is forever being learned by the student. I find that is one of the very intriguing aspects to yoga. You can meet someone who has been practicing yoga their entire life, and they know that they are still learning, evolving, and growing from their practice.
There is no linear learning in yoga. You grow with your practice, and this can include ups and downs, moving forward – but also things that can come up that make feel like you are moving backward.
There have been numerous times since I have started practicing yoga that I have lost my daily practice. This usually happens when I am in my own mental funk. Whenever I find my way back though, I always remember that it really is the one thing that keeps me grounded. It’s a feeling wellness (physically and mentally) on a day to day basis.
Yoga is also something that connects so many people. Whenever I travel, I feel that yoga is a simple thing that I can do anywhere. It is very common for me to visit a new yoga studio when traveling to a new city.
I always find the yoga community to be welcoming, inclusive. I always find each studio to be its own family of students and teachers.
That is something that I find fascinating – you can go to a studio that is clearly a well knit group of people that see each other multiple times per week, but they are always welcoming and are happy to have you as part of their family – even if its just for that one class.
The power of yoga is something that is hard to explain to someone that is new to the practice. It is easy to explain the physical aspects of a yoga practice, but it is not so easy to articulate the spiritual aspect of yoga.