Let's shatter some yoga myths!
There are many ways to define and explain yoga, but in this post I want to focus on what yoga is not. Let's shatter some yoga myths:
"Yoga is a religion" - Yoga is a thousands year old discipline. Even though it originates from India, one doesn't have to be a Hindu to practice yoga. You can be of any religion, or no religion for that matter, and still be a yogi. It doesn't matter to what form of divinity you pray to, or what your beliefs are, it is more about showing kindness and living consciously, ethically.
"Yoga is for the young, healthy and fit" - Yoga is literally for everybody and every body! It is beneficial for kids and adults, and it's definitely not only for those who already exercise. Because it is so much more than physical exercise, yoga doesn't require any "previous experience". Start anytime, start slowly, start with a few minutes daily, start with reading about it, start with doing it for yourself...just start:) And you'll soon find it to be the best thing you gifted yourself.
"You have to renounce your current life to practice yoga" - You don't have to leave your current life and move to a cave in the mountains. Integrate yoga in your lifestyle. Yoga will add value to your current life, inspiring you to live more healthy, balanced, and joyful; it's purpose is not to impose some strict rules to live by...Nevertheless, be ready to see some changes in your life! Once you start living more mindful, some habits may change, some eating preferences, even the people you meet in your life. Once you start "upgrading" your vibe, everything else naturally follows, as it needs to match your energy.
"You need to be flexible for yoga" - You're not a contortionist! Flexibility comes as a benefit of the practice, but yoga is more than asanas. Don't let yourself intimidated by beautiful pictures with complicated poses, those people practiced a lot before being able to do that..and even before taking that perfect picture! Practicing yoga asanas will increase body flexibility, and it is said that "the body is young as long as it is flexible". I can tell you from my own experience, our body learns fast! I was as flexible as a piece of wood for the first yoga class I attended. But than gradually seeing progress, and being able to do things you never thought you could...I can tell you, it's very motivating!
"Yoga is just sport" - Even though it includes physical exercises, yoga is much more than this. It teaches us effective breathing, relaxation, it brings awareness and peace; and overall, a more blissful life. But more about this, in a future post:)