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Q and A with Vibe instructors on staying motivated


Isaac

What motivates you to keep coming back to your mat?

My biggest motivation is mental health. Exercise is a key part of my mental health regimine, getting out there and sweating it out, practicing breathing techniques, and mindfulness of how my body is feeling and reacting are all things that I otherwise wouldn't be able to knock out consistently. I have found this especially important over this past year with flexibility being a skill that we've all had to acquire. It can come with a lot of stress and coming to my mat consistently gives me that daily dose of agency over my life that has been so lacking.

 

What suggestions do you have specifically for new students to build a regular yoga practice?

Start with realistic goals, and don't take yourself too seriously. I started out with the goal of making it to my mat at least once a week, and that has evolved into a daily practice over the years. But, there are still weeks where I have to realize that life doesn't always permit that and I will go back to that once a week goal. You have to be realistic about your practice and accept that there will be days missed and that's okay, as long as you make it back to your mat eventually.

 

How did you develop a consistent yoga practice? 

I started with the goal of one class a week, that was super hard at first. Coming to my mat and making space to care for myself was a new concept that was hard to build into the life of a child, but when your family is supporting you, it helps a lot. The real challenge in developing a consistent practice came when I left for college. Now, I didn't have those people keeping me accountable and it showed. It wasn't until I found a teacher that I loved at school that I was able to start developing a consistent practice again. I recommend finding that teacher that you vibe with, and then setting a realistic goal for yourself. Maybe it's two practices a week, maybe one a week, maybe even one every two weeks, find what works best for you and don't push yourself until the practice schedule you have going feels effortless. Once I got a consistent daily practice, it evolved into further educating myself on the practice. For me, that next step was becoming a teacher, but that may not be for you! Maybe that means grabbing a good book about yoga and giving it a read, incorporating the suggestions in that book, and your practice will start to feel more like you're playing as you absorb more and more knowledge. Just have fun with it and don't take yourself too seriously, a pose may not look like you imagine it should on your body - that was a big step for me - but it allowed me to play and explore more in my practice!

 

What were/are things that get in your way of continued practice? How do you overcome them?

Things that get in your way can be numerous. It could be a stressful work/school week, a vacation, friend in town, etc. times when it is just difficult to make it to the studio! These are great opportunities to start a practice at home. Maybe do a few sun salutations before bed or take five minutes in your day to practice mindful breathing. Try your hardest to take at least an half an hour out of your week to practice in some capacity. Videos on YouTube are a great resource, but sometimes I just want an instructor I know and connect with. A great thing about being at Vibe is all of the online platforms available, primarily ViYo. The ViYo video rental service is a great way to find a 5, 10, 15 minute, or longer practice with an instructor that you love!

Hannah

What motivates you to keep coming back to your mat?

There are many things that motivate me to keep coming back to my mat from the feelings I get when I practice to the community I am blessed to surround myself with. Yoga is all encompassing and there is no one way to practice or to show up and in knowing that, it inspires me to continue to arrive on my mat with both the light and the dark, exactly as I am. Whether it be on days when I feel great or not so great, simply showing up, accepting that each practice will be unique, and arriving on my mat allows me to feel connected, grounded, and taken care of. 

 

What suggestions do you have specifically for new students to build a regular yoga practice?

Start small and breathe. It can feel exciting to want to be a consistent practitioner of yoga, but it can also feel super daunting. There is no one right way to practice yoga and the coolest part about it is that you can practice yoga without even moving your body! So start small, maybe with one or two asana (physical - in person) classes a week and then on your own time at home you could search up 5-10 minute videos to include in your daily routine whether you're a morning or a night person including a short flow, breath work, or meditation can be super supportive in creating small shifts that can lead to life changing habits. 

 

How did you develop a consistent yoga practice? 

It definitely didn't happen overnight! It took creating lots of small habits to create a consistent big one. I started by doing 10-20 minutes of a feel good flow every morning to wake up my mind and body alongside a 5 minute meditation. Doing this helped me to make it a part of my routine to practice and experience yoga right at the start of my day to plant the seed. Eventually I started taking in person classes once or twice a week and I would try out a ton of them. I took from a variety of teachers and styles and started to realize what classes, teachers, and times really worked with my body, schedule, and life. From there I made it a priority to carve out an hour to practice yoga 3-4 times a week for my mental and physical well being. The more I practiced and explored the more natural it became. We live in an ebb and flow so my practice is always shifting and evolving as I shift and evolve. Even when I get out of the habit of having consistent practice I go back to the basics, start small, and build my way back to what feels right and good at that time in my life. Balance, like with most things in life, is key. Trusting the process and knowing that it is okay to 'fall' out of a consistent practice. The beautiful part is that you can step back into it! Yoga isn't going anywhere and there is no one way to practice it. 

What were/are things that get in your way of continued practice? How do you overcome them?

Some things that got in my way of continued practice were definitely time management and lack of knowledge. I always knew that yoga was something I was meant to deeply explore, but it felt distant because I would place other priorities above it. In addition, since I didn't develop a consistent practice or go to a studio frequently I didn't build up knowledge on poses, styles, language, and general yoga stuff so when I would try to practice on my own I was lost on where to start. What helped me was taking guided classes online through youtube and eventually going to a variety of in person classes even though it felt scary at times. It always helped when I would arrive to in person classes early and talk to the teacher beforehand about my experience and the class I was going to take. In addition, when I finally took the leap to educate myself further with my 200 hour certification I noticed an immense shift in my home practice, studio practice, and excitement to arrive on my mat as often as possible. Even doing research and following a variety of yogis and teachers online was super supportive in expanding my knowledge on yoga in the depth it can provide.