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When You Avoid The Yoga Practice

What happens when you find yourself away from your mat for too long? You know that showing up is the hardest part, but you create excuses anyways to avoid doing the work…

I’ve noticed a pattern for me, about twice or three times a year where I take a long break from my mat. Sometimes its because I’m too busy and energetically drained from teaching, other times its because I’m listening carefully. I listen to my body and I do my best to tenderly acknowledge what is showing up and move towards a holistic approach. Although, sometimes too much asana—physical postures—is just that, too much.

This year I’ve had more joint pains and inflammation than I’ve ever had before. So, I’ve taken baby steps back onto my mat. When I do practice, it’s more functional movement and strength training then powering through poses. Just like me, your practice will change. What was once needed, will eventually not work for you at some point.

As our body evolves, so does our practice.

The next time you practice, ask yourself what you really need. Not just what you think you need, because you have conditioned your body into a specific style or routine, but what is it that your body and heart long for. Sometimes that looks like resting with your breath, other times thats stepping strong to your mat.

Permission to pause. If you are struggling with body limitations/restrictions and have found what serves you best is to rest, then give yourself permission to recuperate. Pause from your physical practice so you can come back healthier and wiser for listening to your most important teacher, yourself.

May you listen carefully, adjust the course of your practice and acknowledge the inner teacher.

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