Friday, August 4, 2017

Pursuing Rest via Yoga

I started a more intensive yoga practice last fall while working at a school that offered after-school vinyasa classes for staff. Our teacher was a wonderful woman that knew just how far to push and challenge us. I'd come out of each hour class feeling sweaty, tired, and at peace. I thought that was how yoga was supposed to.

I couldn't go to yoga classes in January, so I committed to Do Yoga With Me's 30 Day Yoga Challenge. I realized that not all yoga classes were an hour in length, and I had to accept the fact that sometimes yoga didn't stretch me and energize me like the vinyasa classes. Sometimes it just rested me.

Fast forward to March and another yoga challenge that involved way too much lying on the ground and philosophizing, and I was pretty set in my yoga ways. I wanted the classes to be long and tired.

But then life got in the way of yoga, our yoga teacher left, and I didn't find time to fit in my weekly hour of yoga. I put yoga off or just did it occasionally. I toyed around with a new video yoga instructor, Lesley Fightmaster, and did a few short classes. But I wasn't committed.

After reading HummusSapien's Love Letter to Anxiety last week, however, I think I'm ready to recommit to a more regular yoga practice. Though building strength to survive those hour yoga classes is cool, what I really need from yoga are the components of muscle stretching and brain rest. Lesley Fightmaster's classes have just enough chatarungas to keep me moving and she always ends with an inspiring quote, so for now, I think I'll still with her classes. So long, hard, sweaty vinyasa. Hello, rest, because right now, that's what I need more of to moderate my life. 

*And if you're like me, living a busy lifestyle but in need of  the rest of yoga, I recommend Lesley's Fightmaster's "10 Minute 'Emergency' Yoga Sequence." As said in the video, some yoga is better than no yoga.*

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