I have been practicing daily yoga for 47 years (except during late pregnancy or when certain events interfered with my practice). Like anything else, it's easy for such a routine to become "routine."
Just like a long-term relationship, you need to consistently make your yoga practice feel "special" to maintain your enthusiasm and commitment.
I recommend the following tips and reminders (which I followed to the letter this morning) to maximize the results of your home practice. I have presented them in the past and they are simple, but truly powerful. When I completed my practice this morning I felt especially energized, alert, awake, and attuned! Here they are:
* Create rituals and infuse spirit into your practice to make it special. My "ritual" is turning on my battery-operated candle (if I forget to turn if off, I won't burn my house down!) and placing it near my yoga mat. This ritual signals to my entire being that I creating a magical time for myself and that I am "lighting" up my body, mind, and spirit with yoga.
* Begin with a breathing technique. The alternate nostril breath technique is my one of my favorite yoga breathing techniques.
* Set an intention with a "key word" such as joy, serenity, peace, energy... and dedicate your practice to that intention. In other words, since I chose "energy" this morning, this meant that as I performed my various yoga poses, I focused on gaining lots of energy from each pose. This reinforces yoga's benefits and you will feel a difference!
* Warm up with a yoga egg roll and neck movements/rolls. The yoga egg roll boosts my energy because I feel like a kid each time I do it since it reminds me of being in gym class in elementary school ready to do tumbles.
* As you do each pose, listen to and observe your body as you move through all the steps of a pose. Be grateful for all you CAN do and don't give a second thought to what you cannot do (at this time...).
* Move slowly and gently as if you were watching a slow-motion dream sequence in a movie - "no pain or strain is all gain."
* Experience the "power of the pause" between poses. One you complete one pose, pause and adjust your body to prepare it for the next pose.
* Conclude with a resting pose (savasana) for at least 2-5 minutes and allow the energy you have awakened in your body to re-settle throughout your body and mind.
If you follow these guidelines consistently, you will gain the following benefits:
"Y" - "Youthing- rejuvenation and youthful vitality regardless of your chronological age
"O" - Oneness and openness of your mind, body, and spirit
"G" - Grace in how move and hold your body
"A" - "Awakening," "Alertness," and "Attunement" in all aspects of your body.
Yours for practicing yoga in the comfort of your home,
Laura Venecia Rodriguez