How To Get The Most Out Of Yoga – During
Welcome to part two of how to get the most out of yoga – during the class.
When I started to write the original post I realized there was so much to talk about and ask my husband – I sure like to talk!
Anyways, I decided to split up the post into three separate posts so that it wouldn’t be one super long post and then I can take more time to describe each aspect listed.
The first post – you can read it here – described what to do beforehand and steps you can take to really be prepared.
In the post, it will be things that you will want to think about during your practice. Sometimes it can be challenging to think about these things as there is so much going on but baby steps, right? Anything is better than nothing.
In the next post to follow, I will talk about what to do after your practice to soak it all in.
As always, I love to hear from you guys so please, leave me a comment with tips that you have had along the way or any questions you may have!
Listen To Your Instructor
This would seem like a bit of a given but listen to the expert.
They will tell you things like – make sure your jaw isn’t clenched, whether to breathe in or out during a transition and where you should feel the stretch.
I really like that they tell you where you should be feeling it. There have been numerous times when I haven’t felt it in that spot and all it took was a little movement – like squaring my hips or leaning different and then WOW it’s a whole new pose.
Also, with time and experience, you realize what you do one way, you have to do the opposite. It’s going from a wheel pose to hugging in your legs close.
Your instructor does this on purpose as to not have any part of your body out of whack. Each pose is specific whether you realize it at the moment and they are there making sure things are done correctly.
Take In All That Chavasana Has To Offer
The wonderful chavasana. The pose seems as though it offers nothing. You lie on your back, big deal hey?
But when you are comfortable and take a moment to close your eyes and focus on breathing cool things can happen.
It’s like that one moment of serenity when you’re just lying there and there’re no thoughts in your mind. (Meditation) Then, of course, something pops in your mind and sometimes you lose that peace and sometimes you can roll with it and continue deep breathing.
It feels like sometimes chavasana is a practice all in its own.
Focus On Your Breathing
Movement and breath. That’s all you need to be thinking about during the yoga class.
Deep inhales and cleansing exhales. I sigh things out all the time in yoga – just because it helps to release all the muscles that tend to tense up in the pose.
If your minds slipping or going into panic mode – I can’t do that, that looks challenging, this is a really deep stretch – Take a deep breathe and settle into it.
Concentrated breathing is so important in and out of yoga.
Stress? Take a couple of deep breaths.
It works for anything and it does feel really good to sigh it all out.
Inhale To Lengthen Exhale To Deepen
When you first get into the pose, it seems automatic to push yourself into it to get that full stretch. You don’t have to push your self that hard. When connected to your breath it is really easy to continue to deepen the pose.
Your teacher will say something along the lines of inhaling to lengthen – which means to straighten out the top half of your body, no hunched shoulders, tailbone tucked – and then exhale and breathe into the part of your body that is feeling the most sensation.
When I first started yoga I would have called you crazy for telling me to breathe into the sensation. Like what is that going to do?
Now I live for it. To just focus your energy on that spot that’s being stretched and breathe out. It relieves the tension and allows you to push into it further.
Never be afraid to explore the poses. There are always ways to make it more challenging or easier and room to grow.
So, in your class, explore what each pose does for you.
I’m getting excited just thinking about it!
I read a post about a week or two ago about belly breathing and it really made me think about how I breathe.
There’s two types of breathing – belly breathing that uses the diaphragm and stress breathing where you can see the breath by the movement of the chest.
Belly breathing is natural and what we should be doing. I had never really thought about that.
When focused though, the breathe is more full and cleansing.
If you ever are just sitting there, think about what kind of breathing you are doing and see if you can change it to belly breathing.
Thank you for being here and learning how to get the most out of yoga. I really appreciate you & you taking time out of your day to read this.
I hope that I have been able to help you out in some way, shape or form!
If you wish, leave your thoughts in the comment section below and I promise to get back to you and answer questions if you have any or just chat about yoga – I am okay with that too!
Here are links for the other two posts:
Hope you have a great day!
PS – Shout out to Yoga with Adriene! I have loved every single one of her classes and am continuing to explore what other classes she has!