Yoga is a divine discipline. Although it has its root in India’s ancient tradition, yoga is more relevant in today’s modern stressful life. Yoga is now a globalized phenomenon and the knowledge of yoga is easily available to each one of us. It is important for attaining physical, mental and spiritual well-being.
There is always scope for Improving and enhancing your Yoga Practice. So gear up with some simple tips and get on the yoga mat with a yogi’s attitude.
Here is a List of Tips and Tricks to Improve Yoga Practice:
1. Respect the limits of your own body.
Can you bring your nose to touch your knee in Standing forward bend? Some people can bend more than others can. So bend only to your capacity. Love your body and respect the limits of your own body. You need not compare yourself with your neighbor or someone on TV.
The thumb rule is to remain stable and comfortable in the yoga asanas. Neither push too hard and try to overdo things, nor be lazy. Do as much as you can - comfortably and with stability.
2. Use the Yogic smile-meter
Do Yoga with a sense of joy. When you overdo a stretch, smile will be the first thing to vanish. If you are not smiling, know that you are not doing something right. Either you are stretching too much or you are not comfortable. Re-adjust your body to get your beautiful smile back. With regular practice, you will find a big improvement.
Warm up: Do some sun salutations or some gentle exercises to loosen up before formally going deeper into other Yoga Asanas.
3. Breathe. Take deep long breaths or ujjayi breaths.
Ujjayi breaths or long deep breaths help you relax and maintain the posture. Focus on the breath to stretch further. Rest in the yoga pose and feel the stretch.
4. Respect and honor your yoga practices.
Yoga is not just a physical exercise, it is moving towards your very nature. Practice asanas with awareness, inwardness and with a feeling of honoring your body. This will bring an increased grace and beauty to your asanas.
5. Get the Yogic attitude. Go within.
While doing yoga postures, using specific rhythms of the breath links the breath and the body. Keeping the attention on where the stretch is happening; this links the body and mind. The body, breath, and mind come together in harmony during yoga asana. This yogic attitude helps deepen your yoga practice.
Which hand do you use more often? On which foot do you tend to lean more when you stand? Observe things about your body, especially do you favor one side more than the other?
Yoga asanas prepare you for meditation and meditation in turn deepens your yoga practices. Play an Online Guided Meditation and follow the instructions to effortlessly slip into meditation. Relax and Meditate. Rest in Yoga Nidra after you finish your asanas. Yoga asanas prepare you for meditation and in turn, deepens your yoga practice.
8. Do yoga on the yoga mat and live yoga off it.
Can you stretch your hand to someone new? Can you remain stable and breathe through the pain in difficult situations (just as you use the breath to stabilize difficult asanas)? Reflect on the 23 hours of life, not just the one hour of yoga practice. That is why yoga is a way of life and not just an exercise.
Drink plenty of water, continuously throughout the day.
Why Improve Your Yoga Practice?
Yoga has many benefits when done properly. However, if done in an incorrect fashion, Yoga Asanas can cause many complications and inflict pain and injury. It is essential to improve and correct your yoga practice and perform poses the right way. Follow the above Yoga Tips towards a better health and enhanced lifestyle.
Your Yoga Practice does not just end on the Yoga Mat, it affects every aspect of your life. It is about having a sense of awareness of your body and breath throughout the day, especially when you’re under stress. This meditative attitude gears you up with a positive outlook. You are able to ease through and challenging situations that would otherwise give you stress. Learning to introspect and reflect on life with a clear vision and a perception that is not blurred is the sign of a true Yogi.
(Based on inputs by Dinesh Kashikar, senior Sri Sri Yoga teacher.)
Yoga practice helps develop the body and mind bringing a lot of health benefits yet is not a substitute for medicine. It is important to learn and practice yoga techniques under the supervision of a trained Sri Sri Yoga teacher. In case of any medical condition, practice yoga techniques after consulting a doctor and a Sri Sri Yoga teacher.