Over the years, I have come across many myths and perceptions surrounding yoga. I will try to debunk some half-truths through this blog and serve you straight up with scientific, self-experienced facts. Contrary to popular opinion, there is nothing mystical about yoga. Like any exact science, its practices are based upon the unchangeable Laws of Nature and are open to precise scientific evaluation.
Men and Women. Young and Old. Yoga is for everyone willing to try it.
It is just as beneficial for men as for women. One of the primary goals of yoga is to bridge the gap between the masculine and feminine energies. Each one of us contains both male and female energies, the Yin and the Yang. We must nurture both to create a balance, and yoga helps us to exactly that.
-YOGA FOR COUPLES: I teach yoga to couples and male athletes. It sparks closeness by bringing together two people using breath, touch, play, movement, and intimacy. Thus, it helps the partners balance their energies and help them bring out the best in each other.
-YOGA FOR ATHLETES: It helps them learn to breathe correctly, improve muscle stability, enhance focus, balance & improve their overall sports performance.
Myth 2 - "You should skip yoga when on your period"
Fact: Restorative Yoga Sequence is perfect while menstruating.
Some people believe that a woman should not practice yoga while she is menstruating and that any form of exercise can mess with her 'natural flow of energy' during her periods.
While it's adviced to avoid inversions and extreme twists, hip openers, forward bends and supine poses all work wonders at this time. When I am on my period, the routine that works best for me includes gentle restorative Yoga asanas that softly stretch my spine, lower back and abdominal muscles.
You can try these Yoga poses during your cycle to relieve symptoms of bloat, heavy bleeding, and PMS.
1- Suptapadangushtasana 2
2- Setu Bandhasana with a bolster ( Bridge Pose)
Myth 3 - "Yoga is just glorified stretching, not a 'Real' workout"
Fact: Yoga isn't just stretching. It successfully combines alignment, strength, and balance.
All asanas might look like stretching and warm-up exercises, but there is more to it than meets the eye. Yoga focuses on strength training, flexibility, breathing & meditation techniques. While it can be intense, it's not as overwhelming as some other types of exercise. Each pose flows into another in a very physiological way, toning and shaping your muscles.
While teaching, I tailor the sequence according to their body type and goal.
Fact:The only requirement to practice yoga is to have a body.
A renowned yoga teacher, Judith Hanson Lasater said "Yoga is not about touching your toes; it's about what you learn on the way down."
Flexibility is certainly not a requirement to start practicing yoga, but it is sure to improve the more you work at it. Like anything else in life, improvement comes with practice. Keep at it, and little by little, you'll see a drastic improvement in your strength and flexibility.
Initially, when I started my practice, I couldn't even touch my toes, and now I can practice deep stretch flow and other Yoga inversions with ease.
Myth 5 - "Yoga has always been about physical fitness"
Fact: There's more to yoga than just physical fitness. It’s a pathway to the union of individual consciousness with Universal Consciousness.
Yoga leads to perfect harmony between mind and body and nature. Yoga is also commonly understood as a therapy or exercise system for health and fitness. While physical and mental health is natural consequences of yoga, the goal of yoga is more far-reaching. I personally like to devote all my Yogic practices to a higher entity. It helps me heal internally and raise good vibrations.
Fact: Any yogic journey first begins with building a basic foundation.
Yoga is a lifelong journey and the teacher that guides you on that journey is a vital part of it. A teacher will make sure your practice is evolving and not stagnating. They will do this with patience and instinctively know when you are ready to move to the next challenge. They are responsible for demonstrating and guiding the students through a series of poses in a safe and understandable way.
The practice of yoga is blossoming and growing more vibrant every day. After reading this blog, I hope you will be motivated to start your personal journey with a clearer perception of yoga.
SAAKSHI IS A CERTIFIED YOGA TEACHER AND A PROYOG AMBASSADOR. DO READ MORE ABOUT HER HERE AND FOLLOW HER ON INSTAGRAM.
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