Social media is such a powerful platform to share, discover and express ourselves. And over the last 5 years I have noticed that yoga has become a lot more recognized in society, which is great! I believe yoga should be accessible to all, to find out how it can make an impact on ones life, particularly as we live in dynamic, high powered and stressful lives. It's sometimes difficult to separate this hectic lifestyle with a calm, relaxed mindset.
Take a look at some of the pictures you see of people in astounding poses on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. They look almost impossible to do and of course could put off a complete beginner Yogi. I wonder whether we have lost sight of what yoga really is about.
Yoga has never strived to be competitive or ostentacious in any way. Of course those complicated poses look wonderful and feel pretty damn good when we achieve them. But what about poses everyone can achieve? The ones which make you feel just as good; shouldn't we be highlighting these too?
I wonder whether we have lost sight of what yoga fundamentally means: a mind body connection. I used to turn up to yoga classes for a good stretch, finding the poses relatively easy to do and didn't think much else. One day it clicked and this is when I developed my vinyasa practice and later Hatha practice. Aaaah! - this is what yoga is, connecting breath with movement, getting deeper into a pose using the breath and understanding your body's capabilities and signals.
Ever noticed that one person in a yoga class appears to be showing off? Well, perhaps they understand their body through freestyle yoga, when you are in tune with your body and its movements . Let me tell you a story. Two weeks ago I went to my usual Wednesday yoga class at the gym, but the class was taken over by a pilates instructor. I like pilates, but I love yoga more and I hadn't done my yoga practice yet that day, so I couldn't just leave the class as it would be rude. So I did what most of us do when we go to any class or to the gym. I worked on what I wanted to do, which was yoga and I did a whole hour of freestyle yoga, listening to my body through movement and breath. I did get some stares, but who cares what people think? Work on you.
At the end of the class a couple of people approached me and exclaimed that they were not only impressed with my movement but that I had the confidence to do that. So, listen to your body, be you-nique and freestyle. It may be a simple or advanced pose, or vinyasa flow. Do what makes you feel happy and do it often! And if you want to, take a selfie.