Yoga is one of the best practices for improving health both in body and in mind. Most practitioners report more energy, a greater ability to deal with stress, and a better outlook on life. Yoga surpasses simple stretching exercises in many ways, and here is how you can enhance your experience and make your yoga routine even more meaningful.
Create a music playlist to enhance your yoga. The genre does not matter as much as the effect of the music on you. The sounds should impart pleasant feelings and encourage focus. Many people prefer peaceful, meditative music like hang drums or ambient chill, but that does not mean you should limit yourself. Some forms of Kundalini yoga or power yoga call for music that is more upbeat at times.
2. Designated Yoga Clothing
There are several ways to alert the mind to switch gears and move away from the cares of the day. Choosing specific clothing that you will use only for yoga is one way to do this. Your yoga clothes can be designed especially for yoga, or they can simply be comfortable clothing that you feel good about wearing.
When you put on your yoga clothing, your subconscious mind will soon see this as a cue that you are about to step into a different state of consciousness for a while. And while you’re at it – make sure your yoga outfits are super cute and flattering. There is nothing wrong with feeling sexy while you’re on the mat.
3. Uninterrupted Time
It is often best to set a specific time each day for yoga practice. The reason for this is similar to the reasons for choosing designated yoga clothes. When your schedule won’t allow it, then find another time and make sure it is uninterrupted time. It can be difficult to bring relaxation and focus to your yoga routine if you worry about interruptions. Your yoga will be far more meaningful if you are able to give yourself over to the poses and movements.
4. Setting Personal Intentions
Setting a personal intention before each daily practice offers extra purpose to the routines. For example, if you have been struggling with an issue or an illness, your intention could be to heal that issue or illness. Nothing needs to be changed about the routine itself, unless you feel led to make changes. Setting an intention prior to practice gives the brain a specific task, and some of the energy that arises during yoga will be directed towards your intention.
5. Essential Oils
The scents around us influence our emotions and state of being. Essential oils can uplift the spirits or calm the body, and they are a natural way to enhance the space where you do your yoga routine. Natural health experts like Gary Young suggest using the oil on your body or placing essential oils in a diffuser to add the scent to the whole room. We recommend lavender to calm or patchouli for grounding.
6. Setting the Space
Whether you do your routine in your living room, bedroom or basement, simple additions can set the space apart as your yoga area. Add a wall tapestry, a throw rug, and a small statue or other meaningful art, and leave plenty of room in the center for your yoga mat. At the beginning of each yoga routine, light a candle and some incense or your essential oil diffuser to increase the effect of setting the space. Even if the room you practice in is used for other things at other times, adding meaningful items such as these helps keep you on task with your yoga.
As you continue with yoga, your preferences for music, scent and other additions may change. Yoga can be a catalyst for personal growth, and it is best to remain flexible to new insights regarding even these simple things. The essential oils you use, for example, may change depending on the type of healing you desire.
Listen to your body and heart, and your yoga routine will remain meaningful and never stagnate.