1. Don’t worry about “how well you do”.
Yoga is not about how deep you go into the poses. You’re here to get into the nooks and crannies of your body (and mind, and life) that otherwise get rushed over, that stress settles into, that get dry & compromised over time. It’s time to take care of yourself.
Cheating the finer points of the pose to look like you’re going deeper cheats you of the deeper benefits. That, and the instructor can see it from a mile away ; )
You WILL see results if you stay consistent. Guaranteed.
2. Yoga doesn’t discriminate against age, activity level, or athleticism.
I say this after watching hundreds of bodies change. The people who get results simply come. Regularly. Not all of them come every day, but they certainly come every week, at least 2-4 times.
It’s crazy to see how nimble and dextrous their bodies become - how strong and flexible. After a while, I forget how stiff they were when they came in. I often find myself teaching a classful of 60+ year-olds, working with them as if they were in their 30’s.
3. Rest or modify if something is too hard.
This is common and no one will bat an eye. Experienced practitioners even do this sometimes, when they want a gentler practice. Going back to point #1, it’s better to do what you can and do it well than to push for too much, too fast.
4. Accept yourself where you are and be realistic.
After doing yoga, my approach to life has changed. I get far more results on my goals (and they stay permanent) with far less effort. Here’s the analogy I use:
It’s as if I used to try to jump a chasm that was juuust out of reach. Every day I’d show up in life, try as hard as I could, and fall into the chasm. It hurt, and it was exhausting to constantly crawl out and try again.
One day I thought, “what if I try to jump small distances, that I’m guaranteed to make? I can jump ‘em all day long and barely get tired!”
Since trying that, I’ve never looked back. Be realistic about where you are and your results will soar. IF you marry it with our last point . . .
5. BE CONSISTENT.
Yoga does to the body what river water does to a stone. You come in jagged and rough and over time, yoga smooths you out. Emphasis on over time. You don’t have to hit a home run every time you come, you just come. Tune into yourself, breathe. Since the pressure to perform is off, and it’s about accepting yourself where you are, you’re able to focus on what’s important . . . which, ironically, gives you the most results.
Aim for 3 times a week, If that’s easy, try for more. If it’s not doable, decide what is and commit to it. Part of the point of yoga is learning to make time for yourself.
All set? See you in class! And remember - we instructors love to help you, so feel free to ask questions anytime!