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Fitness and Flow with Angela

Setting Up For Success With a Home Yoga Practice 🧘‍♀️🧘‍♂️

Angela  Ioannou
Angela IoannouPublished on September 06, 2021

My sister used to always laugh at me because I would stress myself out so much trying to get to my yoga class on time. I would need the class even more to destress from the rush of getting there, getting parked, changed, not having a pound for the locker, finding a spot in class where you can see but not be seen, then having somebody stand directly in front of you obscuring your view. But it’s too late to move 🤣 sound familiar?

Going through the class I would often feel like I was going through the motions, clock watching, trying to figure out what I was meant to be doing, wondering why we were doing a particular sequence and feeling frustrated that I didn’t understand. I would compare myself to others, the regulars, the headstanders (you know the ones who would be casually warming up before the class with an acrobatic sequence that would be so much more advanced than the class itself!)

I had taught exercise classes myself for years and I loved that I didn’t have this same understanding of yoga, but I hated it too 😆

It was only going into lockdown that made me consider practicing regularly at home and it was a game changer! Practicing yoga at home has allowed me to lose all of the other stuff - the rush, the comparison, not being able to see or hear - and focus on what I was trying to do in the first place: THE YOGA 🙏🏻

Here are my top tips for setting up for success in your home practice…

• Create a space you can always access and set a time:

We all know from the last year in particular that space at home can be at a premium! But if there is a space you can set up your mat permanently this can be a great way to integrate more yoga into your life. One of my yogis has set up her mat permanently next to her bed. So every day she steps onto her mat before anything else happens and can spend as much or as little time there as she needs to set her up for the day, or to wind down before bed ❤️ I love this idea!

If you are practicing on demand rather than live, there can be multiple reasons to put your class back or think ‘I’ll do it later’. It’s so important to plan the time you are going to practice at home and then stick to it - put it in your diary, set a reminder on your phone and/or make sure you outline this to those you live with. It can be even easier to get distracted at home, but yoga is the perfect way to start or end your day, or take a break from your desk. You will feel refreshed mentally & physically and so glad you did it!

• Set up for success:

You have your mat, you have a plan for where you’re going to put it and when. Now what? The technology part can be the tricky bit. So once you have your tablet/laptop ready and logged into zoom here’s a couple of things to remember:

Screen options - make sure you are on speaker view. This will mean that you can see the teacher on the big screen icon and yourself small. Straight away you take away the problem in a live class of not being able to see or hear, and the comparison aspect of class as you can’t see others and they can’t see you! Winning 🙌

Screen placement - I would advise you to place your tablet/laptop at one of the top corners of the mat, on the floor next to you. That way you can see the screen whether you are seated or standing, facing the top or side of the mat 🌟

• Enhance the experience… what can you see, hear, smell from your space?

Whether you are able to have your mat rolled out ready to go or need to get it out specially for classes, what else can you do to make this space special for your practice? To really immerse yourself in being present? Is there a lovely candle you have been saving? Or would you like to try some incense sticks? Can you position your mat to look out of your window while practicing? Maybe you can notice something new in your daily view outside that you don’t normally see? It’s obviously easy to say you need to limit noise, but this can prove a challenge with other people at home. If you’re finding this very distracting and you have no quieter space options it’s worth speaking with others at home to ask for some consideration during your practice. Or maybe they would like to join in too 😊 maybe you would like some calming music to go with your practice, or maybe you prefer to enjoy the silence. If you would like to try some music in your next class, here is a link to a new playlist for September that will be a lovely complement to your practice if you decide to use it 💚

• Don’t take it too seriously:

If you take part in your class in your pyjamas who cares? If you struggle with a particular posture nobody will be judging you. If you don’t feel very ‘zen’ right now but do the class anyway, give yourself some credit for showing up for your self. There’s a reason it’s called yoga practice, not perfect! You are there to be with your body, your breath and your mind. To feel better at the end of class than when you started. Don’t give yourself a hard time if some days you get in the zone and others you feel distracted. Every time you step onto your mat and bring your attention back to your practice you are doing something amazing for yourself, your body and your mind, so take the pressure off and enjoy it🌟

I would love to hear from you on any other tips that you have found helpful in your home practice!

There’s still time to sign up for 2 classes/2 weeks for free with me, if you haven’t already. You can practice live or on demand, and cancel anytime. Sign up now to make sure you don’t miss out on this special offer 🙏🏻❤️

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See you on the mat 🧘‍♀️

Angela 💜

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