A few months ago I noticed that my yoga practice seemed to be at a standstill. I was practicing nearly every day and gaining flexibility in basic poses, but I wasn’t able to progress onto more advanced poses. I would attempt arm balances or inversions and fall over right away. I simply did not have the physical strength it took to hold my body weight up in these poses. Therefore, I decided to join a gym to gain the strength that I wanted to see in myself. I created a simple weight lifting plan for myself to build up strength in my whole body. I try to go to the gym three days a week focusing on my back and shoulders, arms and chest, and legs on those different days. After two months of a consistent gym habit I am starting to see amazing results. My flexibility feels more stable and I am seeing improvements in basic poses and am able to at least attempt advanced poses that I hadn’t been able to even attempt before. Along with strength I have built a confidence in my body that it can and will support me. When I try a new pose I am less afraid I will fall on my face.
When I first started practicing yoga seriously I didn’t want to do any other exercise. I felt like yoga was all I needed. Strength training along with my daily yoga practice has completely changed this point of view. There are so many different ways we can exercise, we do not need to limit ourselves to simply one way. Yoga by itself has amazing benefits and it may be all someone wants and needs in their life. However, we need to be careful to not become too narrow in our view of exercising. For me, strength training is now as important as my daily yoga practice. It supplements my practice and strengthens it to make my yoga practice more fulfilling each day. Never feel limited in your yoga practice, find what benefits you and do that!
Do you do any other exercising outside of yoga?