Starting a home practice can be a great way to maintain and even deepen your yoga practice. It’s also a great option if you’re struggling to fit classes into your schedule or want to practice more often than is financially realistic. One great thing about a home office is that it can be anything you need! It can start and end anytime, target your mood and physical needs, and use any genre or volume of music that moves you right now.
What is a home yoga practice?
A home yoga practice is a regular routine that incorporates some form of yoga into your life. It could include practicing yoga poses, meditation, yoga breathing exercises, or chanting Sanskrit mantras. Some people choose to incorporate yoga into their morning routine, others prefer to practice yoga before bed. A home yoga practice is very personal – it is created and defined by your personal preferences, goals and needs. It can be done anytime your schedule allows and can be practiced at your home or outdoors in your yard.
Advantages of a yoga practice at home compared to a yoga studio or gym
There are many benefits to practicing yoga from the comfort of your home. Check out the list below to learn why you would want to start a yoga practice at home.
- You save time. No need to travel, park your car or queue to check in. You don’t have to arrive early either to get your favorite spot in the room!
- Less worry. In your rush to get to a class, have you ever forgotten something important like your yoga mat? Or did you notice in class that you left your water bottle on the kitchen counter? When practicing at home, these things are less likely to happen because they won’t be a problem if you do them!
- You have more flexibility. You can always practice what is best for your schedule and needs. With home training, you decide when and where you practice. For example, you may feel too tired after work to do a full hour of class, so say a few sun salutations instead, followed by a brief meditation.
- There is no one watching. If you are a beginner there is no need to worry about what your body will look like in the poses. Nobody will judge you if you fall off your mat! Keeping an eye on them while you practice can be distracting and uncomfortable. In contrast, a private home practice gives you complete control over your surroundings. There are no distractions so you can fully immerse yourself in your own experience.
- You will not be tempted to judge yourself to other advanced yoga practitioners in a class. If you go to a class with a large number of students, there will always be someone training longer than you. That person may look better than you, but that doesn’t tell you what kind of practitioner you are.
- You have endless freedom to explore Your practice. The only limit is your imagination. What would you like to try next? You may want to add a guided visualization to your practice. How about a different style of asana?
- You can take breaks in the child pose at any time You have to do it without feeling guilty about it. During a long session, sometimes we just need to rest our bodies. We may feel overwhelmed, stressed, or physically exhausted from all the efforts we’ve made. A break enables us to reposition ourselves mentally and emotionally.
- You save money, especially when you don’t have to rely on paid online courses. Most yoga classes range from $ 14 to $ 25 per session, and online video membership fees range from $ 13 to $ 22 per month.
Disadvantages of practicing yoga at home
There can be some drawbacks to practicing yoga at home. You should be aware of these limitations in order to plan and make appropriate adjustments.
- You will not have a yoga teacher correcting your mistakes and giving you options to change the practice and adapt it to your body.
- You may have to do a lot of work to create and maintain a space for your personal practice.
- You may need to invest in some yoga props like a yoga block, pillow, blanket, and yoga strap.
- You will likely stick with the basic yoga poses you already know and not feel comfortable trying more challenging poses without the guidance of a yoga instructor.
- You may miss the support and social aspects of public yoga classes.
- If you enjoy hot yoga, it can be inconvenient to heat your yoga room enough to make you sweat.
How to start a yoga practice at home
If you are looking to add an asana practice to your daily routine, there are a few things you need to consider before you begin. While you don’t have to do everything on our list to be successful, the more you tick off, the more successful your yoga practice will be.
- Find your place.
Getting started is as easy as finding a place to practice. This could be a special place dedicated to your practice or any place where you put your yoga mat and have enough space to move around safely. The ideal space is different for each person and is often influenced by your home and other lifestyle factors. Wherever you practice, make the room feel sacred, inviting, and peaceful in a way that means something to you. “It’s about creating an atmosphere that is so calming that even the family dog can relax with a deep sigh,” suggests Donna Nebenzahl. This calming influence can help focus your attention on your practice by letting your focus move away from the normal distractions around the house. You can light candles or incense sticks, use pictures or statues of eminent teachers or deities, or play certain music. It can be comforting to approach the ritual of preparation with a sense of awe; Your practice has already started!
- Gather your gear.
If you are practicing at home, you will likely need a mat, blocks, and other props. And if you exercise outdoors, you may need a blanket, mat, and some water. Make sure you have all of the home yoga basics you will need before you begin.
- Choose a yoga style that suits you.
There are many styles of yoga, each with their own advantages. Some styles emphasize stretching and flexibility, others focus on building strength, and still others are relaxation. You can even combine elements from several styles in your personal home practice!
- Choose your focus.
On some days you may come to your mat with an exact knowledge of what you want to work on and move straight into your practice. Other days you may feel less inspired. There are plenty of resources for these days. In our exercise area you will find yoga pose sequences for all levels of ability and special sequences that suit your mood. You may also find it useful to have a few yoga books to look up and inspire you.
- Just start.
Start with a short, basic, and beginner exercise and build from there. In the beginning, building the habit of a home practice is more important than what it looks like. Once it becomes part of your routine, experiment with longer, more challenging exercises.
- Commit to an exercise schedule.
Be honest and realistic with yourself so that you are more likely to stick to it. How long will you practice What time of the day will you practice? How many days a week will you practice? If you are still attending class, it can be useful to practice on your days off at the same time.
- Experiment and go deeper.
Once you’ve established a regular practice, it’s time to experiment with different styles and practices. Try different styles like Iyengar, Vinyasa Flow or Power Yoga. Consider incorporating some yin yoga or a few relaxing poses. Consider shifting your focus to another type of movement, such as standing poses, back bends, forward folds, twists, or inversions. Add or try different types of pranayama breathing techniques. Add or try different styles of meditation, such as mindfulness, loving kindness, or mantra meditation. Find additional tips to maintain and deepen your home practice.
Tips for practicing yoga at home
- Do what feels good. Don’t worry about being perfect.
- Be patient. Keep trying until you succeed. The best way to do something better is to do it over and over again.
- Take breaks if necessary. Allow yourself to stop whenever you want.
- Have fun! Remember to smile often during your practice. This will help you enjoy the process and smiling increases endorphins which makes us happy.
- Exercise makes you permanent. Daily yoga practice is ideal, but the more often you can practice, the faster you will learn the yoga postures and breathing exercises.
- Keep learning. Find new ways to challenge yourself by looking up information on the deeper aspects of yoga or speaking with experienced yogis.
- Drink plenty of water after exercising. This keeps your body hydrated and helps flush toxins through your system. It’s especially helpful if you sweat profusely during your yoga sessions.
- Get support. Ask friends and family members to motivate you to continue your practice.
- Release the attachment as you progress. Enjoy the process – your yoga journey is just as valuable as achieving the goal.
- Stay present. When you find that your thoughts are wandering and distracted, bring them back to the moment. See if you notice where your attention has gone and gently bring it back to awareness of the breath and the sensations that are emerging in your body.
- Let go of judgment and criticism. Accept where you are now and keep a positive attitude.
- Take a deep breath. Taking deep breaths throughout the practice will keep you focused and calm while providing your entire body with the oxygen and energy it needs for the practice.
- Believe in yourself. You are capable of anything that comes to mind.
- Trust your intuition and follow your heart. Let your inner guidance lead you to success.
There are ten thousand things that will take you away from your practice, and more when your practice time is dictated by someone else’s schedule. Keep going to your favorite courses, but if you can’t do them, don’t let them stop you! At home, pull out your mat, decide what you need, set the tone, create your practice space and let your own inner wisdom guide you. By consciously maintaining and supporting your yoga routine at home, you can quickly reap the amazing health benefits of yoga.