Author: Melissa Aguirre – E-RYT500, C-IAYT Yoga Therapist – Mel Marie Yoga

There are so many misconceptions about yoga and starting it. There are even deeper layers of benefits that come from practicing mindfulness in general. The truth is that yoga isn’t something to be performed and neither is your meditation, intention setting, or self-care hygiene; these are things to be EXPERIENCED. However, I understand that these practices have been portrayed in not so inclusive ways. So, this keeps people from meeting themselves wherever they are. 

I hope this post (and our other mindfulness posts in the coming weeks) can begin planting seeds to inspire you in the tender tools to discover more ways to nourish your mental and physical health. 

First- yoga doesn’t need to be practiced in a studio. You don’t need to go to a studio to enjoy yoga. Gyms, online resources, corporate, so many ways to play. Even just getting a book and playing on the mat from home. Stretching. Breathing. Relaxing. Not judging. That’s yoga, you guys. It’s those traits that make the practice what it is.

Second- like healing, yoga isn’t linear. I’ve been teaching yoga for about 10 years; I’ve trained over 400 yoga teachers (probably more), and I cannot do a handstand so give yourself permission to let go of the belief that you have to DO. Yoga is about being with yourself. If you tried a teacher or style and didn’t like it- try something different. Yoga is like ice cream. There are so many flavors. Find the flavor/style you like… And if anything, you can’t do it wrong, so play with different methods from home.

And finally- begin where you are. Yoga is not about performance, but a self-experience. Yoga is not about being flexible but expanding the range of motion and the well-being you already have. Yoga is not a religion, but a technology based on human innate traits (breath, movement, and thinking) that orient you towards health. It is about developing healthy body function that helps you feel good, energized, and mentally clear. And the benefits of those alone, lead to so much more. 

For direct questions on this or guidance on where to begin, send me a DM at @melmarieyoga 

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