The Practice that Isn’t Perfect

4 Sep

I first “really” tried yoga about a year and a half ago.  I say “really” because before that, I had done a few yoga DVDs at home and the occasional class at a gym, but I had never connected with any truly educated yoga instructors.  That all changed when a new yoga studio opened near my house last year.  They advertised hot power yoga, a growing trend.  I read up about it, and was mortified to learn that they actually heat the studio to about 95 degrees!   After much deliberating, I finally decided to stop being a chicken and give it a try.

I loved it – go figure.

Not only is the heat amazing, the instructors are so helpful with getting you to really connect with your practice.  Hear your breath, feel your mat, find your limit.  Then go further.

How I feel on my mat is different every time – and that’s how it’s supposed to be.  What you need varies in the day, even in the moment.  Your poses, even ones you’ve done a million times, can change from class to class.  That’s one reason why I occasionally like to attend a beginner’s class.  Even though I’ve been practicing for quite a while now, I find that I can still learn so much from the basics.

The best part about yoga is that it’s a practice.  A practice, meaning that there’s no perfect way of doing things, no end goal where you stop growing.  It is simply a practice, a lifelong journey in which you can discover a great deal about yourself.

Every single yoga class I have attended has been unique. Each class is its own individual entity, a truly organic experience that is created by the instructor and his or her teaching style, the participants, and whatever happens to be going on in the room at the time. Sometimes you just get a magical energy from the class, and it stays with you.

September is National Yoga Month, and I intend to visit my local studio often to re-connect with my own practice and explore (and push) my limits.  I encourage you to do the same!

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2 Responses to “The Practice that Isn’t Perfect”

  1. Lisa Martin September 4, 2010 at 8:17 pm #

    Okay, now I really need to get myself back intot he gym. But I tell you what, the first time I took a true yoga class a couple of years ago, I was practically limping down the aisles of Target two days later. Even my neck hurt! Sigh!

    • Jen September 4, 2010 at 9:57 pm #

      It’s true – yoga is challenging! While some yoga classes are more restorative in that the emphasis is placed on meditation, power yoga will really push your physical limits. If I skip classes for just a couple weeks, I definitely have a harder time making it through a class – and yes, I end up sore the next day!

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