To Your Health
July, 2014 (Vol. 08, Issue 07)
Too Inflexible for Yoga?
By Andrea Weeks
Yoga often triggers the thought of "flexibility" and I have heard too many times to count "I am not flexible so I can't do yoga" and that feeling of being inflexible is just one reason why you should have a regular yoga practice. Yoga is not about putting yourself into the form of a pretzel but it is about connecting mind and body through breath and movement. There are not any prerequisites not even being able to touch your toes. Yoga can be modified to fit the needs of anyone.
Yoga is good medicine without the side effects. Research studies have shown that yoga helps to manage or control anxiety, arthritis, asthma, back pain, blood pressure, carpal tunnel syndrome, chronic fatigue, depression, stress and the list is almost endless.
Yoga also helps to boost self esteem and increase concentration and creativity. The sense of well being and calm it brings can simply make your day a happier one.
In order to achieve these benefits you need to commit to yourself and to your practice to make it part of your routine ideally practicing 3 – 4 times per week. You can't take one class and expect to get results, but I can assure you that when you have established a practice you will find the benefits are numerous and you will likely look forward to it.
As you start your practice be mindful and consider these suggestions:
- Breath awareness is key
- Practice without expectations but with acceptance
- Find your edge with the pose without losing the connection to breath
- Remember it is practice not perfection
- Be kind to yourself practice without judgment
Andrea Weeks has been teaching yoga for over four years at Yoga Tribe and has been trained and certified in the Dayton Method and Warrior Flow methods.