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10 Reasons to Start a Yoga Practice Today

nina yoga colorado 2014

Who knew I’d be able to balance on a rock and do “dancer” pose? Not me.

Yoga is intimidating. Even after the first couple of classes it can be intimidating. You may not think yoga is for you, I certainly didn’t think it was for me. But that’s where I was wrong.

I’m thrilled we offer a safe place for beginners at our yoga retreats. If you’re like me, uncomfortable in a room of strangers who you think are judging you (they’re not!), a Yoga Nurture Retreat is perfect for you.

Five years ago if you would have invited me to a yoga class, I would have laughed and replied, “You’re kidding, right? I can’t even touch my toes.” I thought I knew what it took to do yoga, and I was certain I had none of it. I was wrong.

Four years ago I attended my first class at Black Swan Yoga in Austin, Texas. I was convinced that every single person in that room knew what they were doing… and then there was me. A wobbly, sweaty chick who was obviously out of sync, frantically looking around, and completely clueless as to what was going on… and I was trying to look like I knew what I was doing! As I lay in Savasana (also called Final Relaxation, the final pose where you are, blissfully, just laying there), drenched in sweat with limbs that felt like jello, I wanted more. Even though that hour was incredibly long, challenging, uncomfortable, and embarrassing, I’d experienced a major shift and realized that I was actually capable of more as opposed to less.

This, my friends, is the true beauty of yoga. By setting aside what you think you know and opening yourself up to the idea of trying, I know you will find that you are capable of so much more than yoga.

I hope my experience has resonated with you and you’re eager to run out the door and catch a class, but just in case you need a little more convincing here are ten reasons why you should start your yoga practice today:

  1. Yoga relieves stress and helps you to manage stress.
  2. Yoga helps you experience deeper sleep (plus you’ll find it easier to fall asleep!)
  3. Yoga increases physical strength and flexibility.
  4. Yoga changes the way you think (neuroplasticity).
  5. Yoga boosts immunity and eases pain.
  6. Yoga eases depression.
  7. Yoga builds self-esteem.
  8. Yoga helps you disconnect and find peace of mind.
  9. Yoga cultivates self care.
  10. Yoga increases awareness.

Want to know some secrets I wish someone would have told me when I first started?

Yoga Class at Yoga Retreat

Students of All Levels at a Recent Yoga Retreat

BREATHE. Whatever you do, do not hold your breath. This makes everything a thousand times harder.

Stop worrying about doing it “right” and listen to what your teacher is saying. Right is what’s right for your body, exactly where you are at that particular point in time. This changes! What you can do “wrong” is hurt yourself (this usually happens if you try to overdo it in a pose your body isn’t ready for, or ignore what the teacher is showing or telling you).

It’s okay to be where you are. You don’t have to keep up with everyone else’s pace, your poses don’t have to look exactly like your neighbor’s or the teacher’s, and child’s pose is always available.

Yoga is more about listening and less about looking. Listen to what the teacher is saying, and more importantly listen to your body, pain is your body’s way of saying STOP. Discomfort means breathe deeper. You’ll learn the difference.

No one is paying attention to what you’re doing on your mat. And if they are, they’re probably looking at you to try and figure out what’s going on–ignore it. People who practice yoga regularly are focused on breathing and strengthening their own practice.

Teachers want to help you. This means you don’t have to pretend to know how to do poses you don’t know how to do.

Most of our Yoga Retreats are for all levels. We’d love to help you start your yoga practice.

Learn more here.