What are the best tips for practicing Hatha Yoga?
5 Keys to practicing Hatha Yoga in a more joyful way
The practice of Hatha Yoga is just that, a practice. It is a precise and subtle combination of movement, breathing and stillness, to bring out the best and the worst of oneself, to become aware of certain aspects of ourselves and refine them so that our lives may be calmer, full of blessings and everything more joyful.
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1st Do not expect
Try not to start the class by imagining how it should be. Try to keep your expectations aside. Maybe one day you want a very active class and the teacher that day gives a very smooth class. Maybe you do not want to do the posture of the crow or the pine … What you get in class is a gift. If you have expectations about how it should be, you could be disappointed. Often, what you get is exactly what you need.
2nd Enjoy the practice.
Do you have any goal for your practice? Do you practice to get fit, to become stronger, more flexible, to be able to make more difficult positions? If you are interested only in the results you will be missing the gift and the real purpose of the practice, which is not to get anywhere, but to realize and accept what we are and where we are at this moment. It is the same in life, enjoy the path, have a goal, but do not want to reach it in any way and at the cost of anything or sacrifice.
3rd Stop fighting.
If in a posture you are pulling and forcing, trying to touch your feet or reach further, you are not feeling. If you are not feeling, you are surely not connected to what you are doing. If you are not connected with what you are doing, you are exposing yourself to injury and suffering. The practice of yoga is a process of connection. You reconnect with the deepest of yourself. If you are struggling in postures, or in life, it may be time to soften a bit. If you are continually “pushing” maybe it is time to “get out of the way” (your desires) and let the posture grow alone.
4th Be grateful.
If you practice yoga, you are privileged. You are one of the small percentage of people in this world who have time / money / resources / desire to improve, grow and learn. Do not obscure that privilege by complaining about the classes, the mats that slip, or that you can not make a certain position. Always remember the gift you enjoy.
5th Establishes an intention.
Each practice is an opportunity for you to be more aware of your reality. What do you need to change in your life? What are you avoiding or what behaviors are no longer helping you? How can you use your practice to realize who or what you really are? Each time you practice, establish an intention to be the person you need to be today.
The practice of yoga is a gift. You who already know the results of practicing yoga techniques, consider yourself fortunate and blessed to be able to practice yoga, not all people can do it. How can you expand your vision of everyday life to access a broader vision that makes each practice becomes a transmission of energy, grace and love?