Yoga practitioners and students may be interested in yoga for different reasons and likely have different goals and expectations.
Exploring and learning different styles of yoga can be a wonderful journey, as long as your styles of practice are not aggressive and lead to injury. Without care, you might unintentionally ruin your health or lose time and money with medical issue.Pushing yourself to do difficult postures may cause harm unless your body is ready.
A practitioner may become anxious, so they work hard to reach the point where they can do any difficult asana postures.
However, many practitioners and some yoga teachers, discover that they still don’t have good health, have difficulty with emotions, and still aren’t aware of the relationship between mind and body. They therefore don’t know their body limitation and so are out of balance.
This is a good point to start asking questions. One of the main goals of yoga is self realization. What is the correct and optimal way of practicing to help us get what we want for deeper benefit?
In many yoga studios, instructors may not consider the ability of asana to improve the function of abdominal organs. They may not be aware of spinal movement and put too much pressure on joints like neck, shoulders, knees or ankles. Many of them focus primarily on asana postures which improve the ability of legs, hands or spine. At the same time, the students and teachers try to push the body to make it more flexible and beautiful in order to meet the standard of some external source although the student’s body isn’t ready yet.
Do you practice too many asana postures but never listen to body ? Are you fully aware of your body limitation? What will it look like if we slow down our way of practicing? We should be mindful with our body.
Mindfulness yoga is the best way to help us gain a holistic benefit to, mind and body. It helps us develop abilities, to be aware more of our body , thoughts and emotions. It allow us to know more deeply what the healthy way of our body is. Of course, having an instructor who has mindfulness yoga expertise and teaching experience is essential.
With my experience of mindfulness practice. I have a deep understanding of how our mind, thoughts and emotions have a direct influence on our body, and also how our body is affected by our emotions. Our body and mind are like our “temple”. We depend on them. They are precious, so we need to respect and take good care of them .
During a typical day, if you experience some stress, then your body and mind become tense. You may have had a long day of working, sitting, traveling, driving, etc. Put your yoga matt on the floor, then prepare your body to stay in the moment. Relax your breath, sitting or lying on the mat. Slowly move, and set up your body to be stable and comfortable. Be aware and keep observing what is going on with your body, breath, thoughts and body sensations. Keep bringing your mind back to the body again and again if it goes somewhere else. Let go of your thoughts, your worries, planning, expectations and any desires. Let your mind move together with the body. Enjoy and appreciate the moment. You will touch tranquility and happiness.
Published in the nexspaper, Bangkok Business, Mind and Body session.