Friday, January 06, 2012

9 Tips to get you ON THE MAT

Sometimes the hardest part of your yoga practice is just showing up. It’s literally just getting to the part where you roll out your mat.  And once you've done that... you’re in. You’re flowing, breathing, moving, sparkling.

So how do you get onto the mat on those days where you'd rather just sleep in? In this time of new years resolutions, put your goals out there! Start drawing up your roadmaps for the year ahead. Here’s a couple of tips I help find me:

Do it with a pal
Yoga is about union, so what better way to join together than with some buddies? Not only is it motivational, but it’s fun. I made a commitment to myself last year to do something special with a friend each fortnight – whether it was a cup of tea, a lunch, a movie, a dance class. These quickly became my highlights of the fortnight. Combine that with your yoga!

Get grooving
I love practicing to modern music interspersed with ‘traditional’ yoga music. Check out some of my soundtracks here.  Create an awesome playlist of your own and your practice will become fun, rather than a chore.

Do it your way
Yoga is moving and breathing and doing it with intention. A walk on the beach can be your yoga, if you’re noticing how your feet softly land on the sand. Washing the dishes while washing the dishes (ie not letting your mind wander and not letting yourself speed through it like there was no tomorrow), with mindfulness and awareness, can be yoga. My yoga has completely changed as I'm battling fatigue, so this point is more than ever relevant! Yoga is so much more than asana!

Do a 'Yoga Tour'
Oh it’s been a while since I’ve done one of these, but they’re due every couple of years. 
#1 - Grab a friend and 
#2 - write a list of all the suburbs you want to travel to/studios you’ve wanted to visit. 
#3 - Then go do them! 
My list this year includes: Anti-Gravity Yoga, Power Yoga at Manly (day trip to manly!), The Living Room yoga (yoga to a soundtrack of the ocean – a real life ocean!) just for a few!

Buy a class pack
Class packs work out cheaper than buying a regular drop in rate, and you’ll also be committed. Lots of studios have 5 or 10 class packs, at a slightly cheaper rate. Budget friendly, yoga friendly :)

Try the Intro Offers
Most studios have special introductory offers – the studio I manage has 2 weeks of unlimited yoga for just $25, and you'll find most studios have a couple of weeks or few days for a crazy cheap rate etc. Dive in and try them. Most times, if you go even just twice in the period you’ll have saved money. Yes please :)
Book it in
* In pen.
* Into your diary/iphone/calendar. 
Just like you would any other appointment. And then stick to it, just like you would any other appointment.

Think of the end
I know, we always talk about being present in yoga, and enjoying each moment. But just for today, think of the end of your practice. I always feel better after practice – I’ve stretched, released endorphins, sweated and breathed out all that stress. How can you not feel good after it?

Just do it
Nike were right. For 20 minutes a day, just do it. Show up, & stretch, and then if 20 mins is enough, fabulous. You’ll more than likely want to do a bit more. Funny how it works ;)

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