There is a Chinese Proverb: “The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago, the second best time is now.”
This is the way I feel about yoga. I wish I had started it long ago.
I think my nearly six decade old body would be in significantly better shape than it is today. However, now, with just a handful of intensive years of yoga under my belt, the physical difference is still quite noticeable. What might not be so clear are some of the other benefits of yoga.
Yoga isn’t just a physical practice. It isn’t simply “stretching.” It isn’t twisting yourself into contorted shapes (unless you want to).
It’s getting in contact with your body, as a gateway to getting in contact with your mind. This readying physical practice or “asana,” is what you typically see in pictures of yoga in social media. What you don’t see are the equally important images of breath control or of meditation. Those practices aren’t “cool,” aren’t “flashy,” aren’t “Instagramable” like the photographs of someone like me standing on my head.
Consequently, because what is typically shown seems totally unattainable, maybe even crazy, you might think “yoga is not for me.” Let me correct the record.
Yoga is for everyone, whether you can hang from the ceiling or prefer to sit in a chair. Whether you would like to meditate or would like to move. Yoga is vast, with multiple styles and multiple speeds.
When you find the yoga flavor and instructor that fits you, that is when the magic begins — the magic of using your breath to more easily move your body and of using your breath to still your mind — the magic of perfect synchronicity of the physical and emotional person.
At this point you might be saying that all of this sounds like absolute bunk. I come from an engineering background and am currently a farmer, so not too long ago I would have totally agreed with you. However I am here to tell you today that it’s real, and when the moment comes that you experience this clarity, it is life changing.
What is also life changing is the yoga community. As a yogi you become part of a family.
At my lead studio we refer to ourselves as being part of the Wellness in Motion family. It’s a family that cares for you, that wants you to succeed in whatever form that fits. A family that supports you on and off the yoga mat.
Perhaps the coolest thing ever about being part of the “yoga family” is that you can walk into a yoga studio anywhere and instantly feel at home — no secret handshake required. It doesn’t get better than that.
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