There is a difference between Yoga and Exercise. Yes. There are exercises like sports, wrestling, athletics, judo, karate, gymnastics, gymnasium etc. All have different purposes like strength, speed, skill, agility, cardiovascular health etc. But Yoga practices have different objectives and benefits. Yogic practice results in an improvement of tone of the vital organs and important muscles. It also increases neuromuscular coordination.
Many of us practice Yoga. But before we practice proper care should be taken about the practices.
- Place and Surrounding should be quiet, airy, insects free and clean. It should be cheerful. Better and pleasant place and surrounding improve the enthusiasm and we can participate more actively in the Yoga practices.
- Time: As a general rule, the best time to perform Yoga is on an empty or light stomach. Early morning or in the evening is the ideal time. Ideally, Yoga practices should be performed after 4/5 hours after the full meal and 2/3 hours after a light meal. I have observed Yoga practices in the morning after the bath and in the evening can be practiced with more flexibility.
- Dress: Minimum, light and loose dress are recommended for proper practices.
- Seat: Have Yoga carpet on the ground in which you practice Yoga. The base ground should not be too soft or too hard.
- Between two practices: Have adequate rest in between the two practices by relaxing the body for a few seconds. It shouldn’t be practiced nonstop.
- Yogic practices should be performed with ease and comfort without force or strain.
- All Yogic movements should be slow, steady, continues, rhythmic and graceful. Do not hurry.
- Avoid competitive spirit, do according to your capacity.
- Prayatna Saithilyata (Less effort): It should be practiced with minimum physical and mental effort.
- Bhedatmak Sithilta (Differential relaxation): This means only those parts which are involved in the practice should be used and other parts should be relaxed consciously. Usually, unconsciously we stress other parts too. This should be consciously avoided.
- Eyes: While going in the posture and coming out, keep your eyes open. Close the eyes in the final posture.
- Breathing: During the practice keep breathing with the nose from start to finish. Unless in some postures, breathing regulation is advised.
- Pranadharna (Focus on the breath): During the final posture and maintaining the posture, keep your focus on your breath. Count your breath while you are in the posture. This will help the practitioners avoid wandering the mind.
- The way of life: Keep practicing daily. It is a way of life.
Make your Yogic practices pleasurable and do it right for the maximum benefits.
“To perform every action artfully is yoga.” – Swami Kripaivananda
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