When we hear the word “yogi,” we may envision women with perfect posture doing back bends as the sun rises. But for many of us, touching our toes is hard enough as it is and the idea of practicing at sunrise makes us want to pull on our yoga pants and crawl back into bed. Luckily you do not have to hop into handstand every morning to be considered a yogi. A dedication to the practice is all it takes, and that dedication can come in many forms. Here are some tips for those lazy yogis that need help kick-starting or maintaining their yoga practice…preferably after 9 am.
Practice in smaller doses
Most yoga classes are at least an hour long, but you do not have to practice for 60 minutes to call it yoga. Five minutes of stretching in the morning and/or practicing your breathing exercises in traffic can be hugely beneficial. We are not advocating giving up long form yoga classes all together, but implementing short-term yoga sessions into your daily life can help make yoga habits stick in the long run. We start small in order to grow big.
Practice yoga anywhere
Lazy yogis often find themselves thinking, “I want to do yoga; I just do not want to stand up.” Take advantage of downtime moments in the office, on your couch, in the car or on your bed to bust out some yoga poses. Don’t worry—seated yoga is a real thing with real benefits. On days when Warrior II sounds impossible, don’t beat yourself up. Instead, do what you can with the in between moments and remember: Doing something is better than doing nothing. Some easy chair yoga poses include neck circles, twisting, forward folding, side bending, and eagle arms.
Try restorative or yin yoga
For those days when you want to go to a studio class, but do not want to leave sweaty and fatigued, try a restorative or yin class. These classes are generally low to the ground and slow moving. You stay in each pose for an extended period of time—often with the aid of props. These classes are perfect when you are feeling drained and want the relaxing benefits of yoga without all the work.
Always keep it fun
The key to doing anything you do not want to do is to gain a different perspective. If the words “core work” or “arm balances” make you groan, it’s time to shift your perspective. Everyone has a nemesis pose—an asana they dread practicing—and often these asanas are the ones we most need to work on. In order to persuade ourselves to practice these dreaded poses, we need to find the fun in it. Get playful. Turn up the tunes, laugh when you fall, and enjoy the practice. When a task is fun, it is way easier to accomplish.
Use the buddy system
We often find it hard (if not impossible) to stay self-motivated. One way to overcome this dilemma is to practice the buddy system. When we are accountable to others, we are way more likely to follow through. It’s easy to decide last minute not to go to that afternoon vinyasa flow class. It’s a lot harder to skip it when you know someone is expecting to meet you there. Create a yoga schedule with a fellow yogi and you will be way more likely to stick to it.
How do you get out of bed and onto the mat when you’re not motivated?