How to Add Tools and Tech to Boost Your Yoga Practice
Yoga is a phenomenal tool for healing, health and self-mastery. It is one I use regularly to honor my body, connect with my life force and strengthen my ability to stay in the present (you know....where happiness is ;-P).
If you've never tried yoga or you regularly hit the mat, today's post from guest writer, Sheila Johnson is sure to help you sharpen this wildly beneficial tool!
The ancient practice of yoga is used to help improve strength, balance, and flexibility. It can also have other health benefits, from reducing stress and tension to lowering blood pressure. To deepen the impact yoga has on your life, there is equipment and tech you should consider.
Refine Your Motivation
To encourage your focus and motivation, it helps to decide on specific intentions. One way to do this is to use an app on your phone to create a weekly yoga goal. Check out the MyFitnessPal app and website, where you can decide on your ideal number of yoga sessions per week and even the number of minutes per session. What’s more, this can be a tool for your overall wellness and self-care regimen, since you can use it to set health-related reminders and track your nutrition. These features are all included in the free version.
Give Yourself Permission to Practice for as Little as 7 Minutes
Everyone has busy lives, so if you're looking for a yoga routine you'll be able to stick with, consider a seven-minute one. As TreeHugger explains, even this short amount of yoga on a daily basis can provide benefits for your life.
Have you considered streaming a yoga program? It’s a simple way to keep your regimen up without getting to a studio outside of the home. A popular option is Yoga With Adriene, which has a playlist specifically for yoga sessions that are under 10 minutes. Most of these free videos are seven-minutes long and have themes aimed at everyone from couch potatoes to runners. There are also options to suit any time of day from morning to bedtime.
Leave Your Comfort Zone
As YogaBrains explains, changing things up can make your yoga routine feel not so routine. There are plenty of ways to add variety to your practice. For instance, you've likely heard about inversions as a way to get a new perspective, energize yourself, or improve circulation. Or, you may have tried inversions but found them difficult or frightening. Challenge yourself to try something new, and work toward the more advanced inversions of headstand, handstand, or feathered peacock pose.
If you're interested in adding inversions to your yoga practice, try a yoga inversion chair to help you get started. These stools are designed to support you by your shoulders as you're upside down. They can also be used to modify other positions or for other conditioning workouts.
Another option is to practice your sessions in nature. Being in the great outdoors can deepen your appreciation for our world, reduce tension, and even reduce toxins in your body. Not everyone has a sequence memorized, so you might need to figure out a way to ensure you have instruction by streaming a class via your smartphone. If you have trouble getting a signal to access your favorite programs, try adding car WiFi to your tech toolkit. With a dependable, powerful signal based in your vehicle, you can easily stay connected while connecting with nature.
Meditate Instead of Zoning Out
Adding meditation to yoga can reduce stress and improve physical and mental health, but it can sometimes be a challenge to stay focused. If you'd prefer a guided meditation, several options are available by asking Alexa on an Amazon Echo.
PCMag notes some top options include Insight Timer, Headspace, Guided Meditation, Meditation Studio, and Sweet Dreams. Each has different choices for meditations from happiness to falling asleep. For a faster session, try One Minute Meditation. These suggestions are all free to enable as Alexa skills, although subscribers to the apps receive access to extra meditations. Once enabled, just ask Alexa to open the skill.
When you begin your meditation practice, try to find an area of your home where you can focus without distraction. You should also take care to keep this space free of clutter so that you won’t get bogged down by the anxiety that disorganization can cause.
Everyone is at a different stage in his or her yoga journey. With today's tools and tech, it's easier than ever to advance your own practice. With that in mind, explore some of the choices available, and see what brings the best balance to your life.
If you want to learn more about how you can connect the philosophy behind yoga into other aspects of your life, including gardening, stop by Green Thumb Yogi.
Sheila Johnson once enjoyed a very successful career, but her health was another story. She left the corporate world to start her own business, on her own schedule. She found a routine that balances work life with taking care of her mental, emotional, and physical health. She created Well Sheila as a place to not only share her story, but inspire others to put their physical and mental health first with a regular wellness routine and daily self-care.
Please note: links have been provided in this post as resources for information only.
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