Yoga has been a part of my life since I was in my 20’s and my practice has very much evolved over the years, as it does with all regular practitioners.
I first came across Yoga at the gym and I really enjoyed the different poses, which could be quite challenging. The class was also pretty fast! It was a good workout and I felt great afterwards. I also felt there was more to this Yoga business than met the eye. Turns out I was right!
So off I went to a Yoga Studio and the difference was night and day! Most of the poses were the same or similar but there was a focus on breathing, really feeling it in your body, little pearls of wisdom peppered throughout the class and the relaxation bit at the end was utter bliss! I floated off home in my Yoga bubble and was totally hooked!
Back then I liked the fast-pased Vinyasa classes and so wanted to be able to do the really advanced poses , like now! At that time the goal of Yoga to me was to be able to do a headstand and all the cool bendy stuff, which by the way takes YEARS of practice and never giving up!
I also began to really love the philosophical side of Yoga, which deeply resonated with me and I wanted to know more. So eventually in my 30’s I did my Yoga Teacher Training and the whole world of Yoga was fully opened up to me. I realised that I had indeed, only been seeing the tip of the iceberg till then.
I learned what Yoga really is about (not headstands and the really cool bendy stuff) but a whole set of vast practices, who’s ultimate goal is to calm the mind and reveal your true nature. I do realise I lose some people when I say that, as it can seem quite ‘out there’, but it really is an experiential thing and I ‘get it’ now as I’ve felt it myself. Yoga is not about improving yourself, your life or your body, but accepting it.
My practice has really slowed down so much over the years. I discovered Yin and Restorative Yoga which I love to both teach and practice myself. I’m now really interested in the therapeutic benefits of Yoga and as I enter into my 40’s, the faster practices no longer appeal to me. I like to slow it down, turn inwards and really feel the poses and juicy stretches now and there isn’t a headstand in sight!
I’ve also turned to Yoga to help me in whatever stage of life I’m in. I’ve practiced and took a course in Fertility Yoga, really connecting with my feminine and cyclical nature, which was a total revelation to me! As a woman, why had I never been taught this essential information before?! It worked by the way, and I’m now 18 week pregnant!
And so begins my next chapter and journey in life. My Yoga practice has changed yet again. I’m continually rediscovering my unfamiliar body as it changes week by week. What feels good to me at the moment is Kundalini Yoga (who knew!) , which changes my often ebbing energy levels.
I know there will be big changes ahead for me and have no doubt my Yoga practice and even teaching will evolve yet again to help me navigate these unfamiliar waters. Yoga is my constant, my anchor as my body and my life change in the coming months and years ahead.
Yoga is a journey, as is life! It’s evolves, and adapts to suit your body’s needs not the other way around. So how has your Yoga practice evolved and why do you practice it? I’d love to know in the comments below!