Overcoming your yoga excuses

young beautiful woman sitting in lotus positionPracticing yoga on a regular basis helps improve your concentration, relieve stress, and increase your sense of wellbeing. But sometimes your hectic life and busy schedule can really get in the way of your yoga practice. We all have excuses for skipping a class, but sometimes it’s more important to exert self-discipline and stick to the plan rather than abandon it completely. Are you constantly making these common excuses to avoid yoga? Read on and find out how you can overcome them.

I’m too busy

This is perhaps the most widely used excuse for missing a yoga class. You might say you’re too busy to drop by your nearest studio, but guess what? Everyone is busy these days! There are many yogis out there who can carve out time for a daily one-hour practice, and they must be doing something you’re missing. We all have 24 hours in a day – it’s just a matter of prioritizing and making small tweaks to your daily routine to squeeze in yoga practice.

I’m not flexible enough

If you’re intimidated by the extreme flexibility and bendiness of the yogi on that magazine cover, or how easily your fellow classmates can bend over and reach their ankles with their hands, here’s some consolation: it takes time and consistent yoga practice to create and maintain flexibility. You might not be able to twist your body into some of the more complex and demanding poses on your first attempt but, with more practice and patience, your flexibility will definitely improve over time.

I’m overweight

You can’t afford to let this excuse stop you from trying out yoga. Many classes for beginners have no prerequisites, meaning your bulky body shape won’t be a problem. In fact, low-impact exercises like yoga may be more comfortable for overweight people than other types of workouts like running or weight training. What’s more, professional yoga instructors can provide modifications for all fitness levels and various types of bodies in a class, so even plus-size yogis can ease into poses quite comfortably.

I’m too old

It’s never too late to start practicing yoga, regardless of the stage of life you’re in. Although certain postures like handstands can be more difficult for older adults as a result of less flexible joints, the challenge of balancing, and other health concerns, many other poses are not physically demanding at all. There are special classes designed for people in their forties and beyond, where poses are modified and the pace is a lot slower than in other classes. Don’t let your age become an issue!

I don’t know what to do

Are you worried that your inexperience will be a burden and slow the whole class down? Don’t be. The truth is that not everyone really knows what they’re doing in a yoga class, even if they’ve been attending for weeks or months. And even if you’re in a class full of experienced yogis, there’s no reason to feel intimidated. Yoga instructors are accustomed to having new faces in the class, and they can help guide you into sitting, standing, and moving so that your body can find balance and you can achieve the perfect alignment.

Don’t let these excuses hold you back from practice! If you want to learn more about yoga, get in touch with our expert instructors today.

Published with permission from FitnessAdvisory. Source.

Yoga tips for plus-size bodies

164_yoga We’ve all seen her. The smiling blonde, super-sexy, super-toned girl beaming on the cover of Women’s Health magazine or the like. Decked out in her yoga pants and tank top, we’re all just dying for a body like that. But the truth is that many of us don’t fit that mold. In fact, if you look around most yoga classes, you’re likely to see a few plus-sized bodies. And one of them might be yours. If so, it’s wise to remember that our larger bodies work a bit differently. And there are a few tips you should bear in mind.

Slow down

Intense, fast workouts aren’t the only way to exercise. And while the quick paced classes of vinyasa are becoming more popular, that doesn’t mean there’s no calorie burn in a slower class. In fact, slow yoga can increase strength and flexibility. Additionally, it rids your body of stress-induced chemicals that cause weight gain and inflammation.

If you’re a plus-sized girl who’s new to yoga, it’s even more important that you find a gentle, slow class when starting out. This will give you a chance to ease into the practice so that you don’t feel discouraged by a workout that’s too challenging. If you’re lucky, you may even be able to find a yoga class specifically designed for plus-size bodies. If you do, take advantage immediately!

Trust your inner voice

As with all exercises, you need to learn to trust your inner voice so that you know when you’ve hit your limit. Just because yoga is a low impact exercise, it doesn’t mean you can’t hurt yourself. Twisting and contorting your body into poses you’re not used to can cause strain, muscle tears and even back injuries if you go overboard. The fact is that not all poses are going to work for everyone. All bodies are created differently, and some positions cause unique challenges depending on the body that’s undertaking them.

Being plus sized, you also need to remember that your weight is literally weight. When you go into the crane pose, you could be lifting 50+ more pounds than the size-four girl at the front of the class. Your body is simply not going to move into that position as easily. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Respect your body, don’t judge yourself and follow your instincts.

Practice with a teacher you like

Yoga, and all exercise for that matter, should make you feel good about yourself. If you come across a teacher who makes you feel ashamed of your body or is pushing you too hard, it’s time to change classes.

There are plenty of teachers out there who will have you leaving class feeling positive, smiling, and with more patience and clarity. Find that teacher and stick with him or her.

Know your motives

Why are you doing yoga? If you don’t know, it’s time to take a minute to reflect. Are you there for fun? Do you want to try something new? Do you just want to shed pounds?

Whatever your reason, know that yoga is not just about exercise and toning up. A large part of the practice is developing mental focus and clarity that you can carry into your everyday life. When your yoga instructor tells you to focus on your breathing, she’s doing it for a reason. If this doesn’t matter to you, there may be other exercises better suited to you than yoga. You have plenty of options. The important thing is to find a workout routine you enjoy that accomplishes your fitness and health goals.

Want to learn more about yoga or need advice finding the right exercise? Get in touch today.

Published with permission from FitnessAdvisory. Source.