Making Yoga Work for You

Unlike the stigma of its granola past, today making yoga work for you, has become something much more.

Silent Journey Making Yoga Work For You

Whether it’s Bikram yoga (hot yoga classes) sweeping the US, popular culture taking notice as it did with Julia Roberts’ obsession with yoga in the movie Eat Pray Love or the hip new trend of yoga for toddlers, yoga has certainly reached a new level of trendiness, not only in the US, but globally as well. But trends aside, one thing remains the same – yoga is personal and it’s your experience with it that shapes your results both in and out of class.

While I’ve practiced yoga on and off over the past few years, it didn’t become habit forming until I began attending classes on a regular basis in the spring of 2012. It was a particularly stressful period of my life, mostly stemming from the stresses of graduate school. The local studio in my neighborhood was only a short walk from my apartment and the time I would come to spend there would prove to be invaluable.

The space itself had beautiful hardwood floors throughout and three windows, which overlooked several large trees. During afternoon and early evening classes, the shadows from the branches and their respective leaves would create beautiful patterns on the studio walls. They became my focal point. During challenging poses, I remember using the dancing patterns as a way to center my thoughts and my body while concentrating on my breathing. After a while it just worked – it became my way of harnessing the power of yoga.

By concentrating on my breathing, I felt my body begin to relax and ease into the pose I was doing at that time. But the moral of this story is not to simply show you my personal experience with yoga, but rather show you what you stand to gain from having your own experience with yoga.

My experience began seeping into my everyday life. The practices that I did and continue to do in that room, now translate themselves into my entire being. Just by remembering to focus on the task at hand and to breath properly, things that used to seem overwhelming have now become something within reach – something I can overcome. And that in itself has become as easy as learning another challenging pose in class.

As I said, yoga is personal and it’s your own experience that shapes it. And to me, that is as trendy as it needs to be.

Anni Irish
Silent Journey Contributor

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