Should you practice yoga together in a group or on your own?
Practicing yoga in a group class brings people together in community, it helps motivate and inspire you to have a consistent practice. That said, yoga can be a very personal experience when you need it to be, and developing a practice at home solo can be a great way to take your practice to new and different places.
At some point, every student of yoga will want to develop their own home practice which can be a very creative and enjoyable experience and one where you develop your own distinct relationship to the art form of yoga.
The only down side of a home practice is that you do not have a teacher present to see you practice and help you with adjustments and verbal cues, especially if you’re just getting started. A teacher can help you improve your form, which can help you go deeper or gain therapeutic relief in poses.
But let’s face it, sometimes our busy lives simply don’t allow us to make it to class. Not to mention, when it's just you, it can be challenging to stay motivated to get on your mat. We’ll use any excuse not to practice!
For this reason, I highly recommend www.yogaglo.com, an online service that brings world-class teachers into your home, hotel room, or wherever your busy life may take you.
YogaGlo has classes as short as 5 minutes or as long as 120. (Becoming a member of yogaglo.com is free for the first 15 days, and then costs only $18 a month – the price of a single class at most studios. I teach on the site too, so I hope to see you there!)
If you’ve been wondering about practicing yoga at home, either on your own or guided by an online class and were not sure how to start, the first thing to do is to establish a space in your home where you can roll out a sticky yoga mat.
You can have a lot of fun creating a sacred sanctuary of your own.
CREATING YOUR SPACE
Here are some ideas to get you started and help you make your home studio most practical and appealing:
- Find or create a clean, uncluttered space with plenty of natural light, preferably with plenty of wall space so you can do inversions!
- A wooden floor is ideal.
- A low table to place sacred objects such as crystals, photographs of loved ones or teachers, candles, fresh flowers, or objects from nature (anything that holds value and meaning for you).
- A simple container to house yoga props such as blocks, blankets, mats and straps.
- A music system for ambient music (can be a simple speaker you connect to your smart phone). If it helps, create a playlist that motivates you to stretch and breathe
- A bookshelf to hold books about yoga, nutrition, spirituality
- A low laying chair to curl up on with a book
Disclaimer! Never wait for your yoga space to be perfect before practicing yoga. Even if your sanctuary is not exactly how you would like it to be, it's better to practice than to wait for the perfect set up or décor. Getting on the mat is far more valuable, even if the surroundings aren’t quite there yet!
Have you created a home yoga practice space in your home? Do you have a home yoga practice? Share your ideas and insights in the comments below!