We read it everywhere: Practice Yoga Every Day. I think this statement needs clarification. Some people see this ‘practice’ as a 90 minute session of handstands, full blown hanumanasana, 100 sweaty salutations of the sun and arm balances galore. There is more to discover of yoga than this. I used to do two exercise classes a day. Sometimes it was two yoga classes, in college it was: a step class and then a yoga class, or an hour of Zumba and then an hour of sculpt, and this was seven days a week. It was hard on my body and looking back I was hiding in the gym/yoga studio from reality. Now, I think a regular yoga practice is a beautiful thing, but I also think this doesn’t have to be defined as: a 90 minute hot vinyasa flow, seven days a week. I think a well-rounded yogi should sprinkle in a yin class or a personal restorative practice, maybe substituting one of the strenuous physical practices for a meditation session. My teacher, Annie Carpenter told us in our teacher training that a yoga teacher needs to practice yoga daily, she would follow that with: sometimes our yoga practice has to be a meditative walk on the beach or curling up with the Yoga Sutras.
We will have to alter our yoga practice at some point in our life, if we are in it for the long haul, because of injury, illness, pregnancy, aging and sometimes life just gets in the way of us making it to the mat every single day. At the end of the day it’s not the physical practice that is most important, and at the end of our life, what will our yoga practice look like? Probably not 7 days a week of 90 minute hot vinyasa flow.