Most of us, if not all of us, have attended a yoga class at some point and time in our lives. If you haven’t, I am sure you have been invited by one of your mala-bead wearing, crystal-loving, tarot-reading, plant-based enthusiast, health-forward friends. What is it that has suddenly gotten everyone so hooked?
We all understand the premise behind yoga is to connect the mind, body and spirit, but what does that even mean and why is it important for me? There are three main reasons people find yoga but only one reason people keep practicing, not for just a few months or years but for an entire lifetime.
Reasons why people try yoga:
Body: Physical pain, tightness, or a good workout. These plus many more physical ailments or aesthetic desires are the main reason people step into their first yoga class. Yoga is a gentler and more nurturing way to work the body but can also provide a good sweat and stretch.
Mind: Ah, the ever-chattering mind. The I can’t sleep, I am overworked, I can’t concentrate, or I am stressed dilemma. Yoga provides an environment that is calming and accepting which allows people to forget about life for a while and just be one with their body and breath.
Spirit: We can thank the current paradigm shift for this one as people are becoming more interested in diving deeper into their human experience. People are craving time to reflect and connect to themselves, to understand the inner workings of their being.
Maybe one of those was your reason, or maybe not. The cool thing is that it doesn’t really matter why you got into yoga or if you have never stepped onto a mat before, and you are reading this to see if you should. Honestly, you don’t need a reason for anything in life; if it aligns with you then just do it.
Back to the point: is yoga a trend? Unlike Jazzercise in the 70’s, Step Aerobics in the 80’s, Zumba, cycling, and group fitness gyms, yoga is here to stay.
What makes yoga different? Is it because it has been practiced for thousands of years throughout ancient civilizations?
Perhaps it is yoga’s healing power: increased in blood flow, posture improvement, immunity booster, adrenal regulator, energetic shifts, the list goes on….
It could be that at the root of its historic traditions it is a deeply spiritual practice that can connect you with the divine and guide you back to your personal power or even Enlightenment?
All of these reasons ring true. However, the main reason why yoga is not a just a trend is because from the first time you step on your mat to every single time after that the practice is completely yours. Yoga is no longer a club of intense super yogi’s that only eat raw kale and turmeric who are able to wrap their foot around their neck. Instead it is for all shapes, sizes, flexibilities, walks of life, no matter where you are in your journey or what you need out of it.
You don’t have to do it well, or even like your instructor says. Yoga is simply to yoke: to create a harmony between the body, mind, and spirit through movement, breath, and introspection. Yoga is to come in contact with the wholeness of who you truly are. To remind you that you are a significant part of the ever-evolving, collective consciousness that is our universe. You are powerful, intuitive, compassionate, and full of creation.
Yoga is here to stay because it is an open and ever evolving tool that you can use at any high, low or in between time in your life. There are no rules anymore as to how it should be done. You can practice to get fit, to slow down, by just laying on the floor; you can practice without even physically practicing. It may take a while to puncture the surface of the practice, but if you continue with dedication and an open mind you will start to unblock all that is necessary to solve the enigmas to your soul. In other words, you will become yourself once again.
Yoga and the harmony of it all is meant to be taken from your mat and into your daily life. That is what separates yoga from the rest of the trends out there and makes it a way of living instead.
Namaste. See you on your mat.