Practicing Ashtanga Yoga At Home
Practicing Yoga at home is one of the easiest things in the world. You dot need anything in the way of expensive equipment, just yourself and a room. In today’s busy world, it isn’t always possible to make it to every Yoga class but it is important to keep your practice up. As Ashtanga Yoga practitioners, we advocate the group environment method but we do understand that isn’t always possible so we have some tips for you to practice Ashtanga and Vinyasa Yoga at home.
- Set Sequence. Sticking with the same poses every day is a very powerful way to be consistent. It helps you to see your progress, see the changes in yourself. There’s no thinking about what to do next, you just move gracefully from one pose to the next.
- Minimum Practice Time. You must set a minimum time each day, even if only for 15 or 20 minutes. Anything over and above your set time is a bonus.
- Sanctify. Turn a set spot in your home into your practice zone and, once in that zone stay there. Focus only on your Yoga – switch off the phone, the TV, no music, no distractions. Your practice time and zone are sacred.
- Time. Always take the time to sit in stillness and silence. Include this a part of your practice time – it will bring about a sense of peace and fulfillment.
- Invert. Turn yourself upside down every day, whether it’s a headstand, shoulder stand or Viparita Karani. It clears your head and your perspective.
- Classes. Make sure you do get into a class on a regular basis or a workshop. A great teacher will notice areas that need tuning and it gives you the motivation and the inspiration to continue at home.
Smart Sequencing tips
- Get in touch with your breathing – try , either seated or in a child’s pose.
- Warm up the spine and the backs of your legs very slowly with gentle stretches. Try the rag doll forward fold or gentle lunges.
- Sun Salutations – These are vital to your sequence – Surya Namaskar A and B. Make sure you follow the breath and be very precise when you go through the Vinyasa positions – Chaturangas are not to be skimped on.
- Standing/Balancing Poses – Include Trikonasana or Parsvokonasna in your practice. Pay attention to your hip flexors with the Lizard or Runners Lunge or a low lunge, arching the arms back over the head.
- Seated Poses – Make sure your practice includes twists, forward folds and hip openers and ensure you treat both sides of your body equally.
- Focus on your core strength by using long and strong Chaturangas, the Navasana pose, and the side and forearm planks.
- Backbends – practice when you have warned up properly – try the Camel, Locust, Bridge or Bow pose to build up strength in the spine area and to open your chest. Make sure you stay fully engaged with your Bandhas throughout your backbends and practice to ensure a strong lift at the navel to increase the space in your lower back.
- After backbends, finish with a forward fold to neutralize the spine.
- Finish with inversions and any other quiet pose.
- Savasana – Allow your mind to relax and your body to become receptive to the movement
- Meditate to finish.