Hello all! Some days I come to the mat and everything is just difficult. My breathing is off, I’m holding tension and unable to create space, I’m wobbling everywhere and my body wants to give out right from under me. Any suggestions on how to be gentle with myself on those days when my practice really pushes my patience?
hello, I have those days too… (oh hi! look at me posting to the forum instead of stepping onto my mat!) For me I try to remember that my practice is not about doing the poses perfectly; it is about being present for my practice. So I wobble and fall out of a pose. I notice what I feel about that, and then I pick up where I left off. Some days I put myself in child’s pose until I can get up again. If that happens over and over on a certain day, then what I need to practice that day is getting up after I fall and letting go of my judgement about it.
It is very challenging for me! But I hope that makes some sense.
I think the most valuable lesson I have learned from yoga is to listen to my body. Off days (unbalanced, achy, tired) are common for me and now I accept it and just do a gentle or restorative beginners class. At first I was worried that I was taking one step forward and two steps back. Truth is, I actually gain more from my off days by accepting it and find I am stronger and more energetic on better days that follow. Pushing myself on off days just made the off bit last longer. I hope this helps.
This is beautiful advice, thank you for sharing. And thanks to the original poster for the question too. This is beneficial for all of us
Thank you all for the wonderful advice (: I will be remembering this on my next off day! Thank you for taking the time to share this with me; I really appreciate it
We just wanted to say we know your pain. We kept up our practice regularly, every evening and morning, for a while. Then one day we had a tough yoga day. Nothing was aligning, we tried two-person poses and fell every time, our flexibility was sub par. It was difficult. And unfortunately we let the pressure get to us and we took a long break from yoga (five months). Only now are we starting to get the wheels turning again. So we are here with you!
Maddie and Rose
This has happened to be a few time and I found that changing the class I was attempting can help, or doing a shorter session. On a couple of occasions I only managed to do the sun salutation/downward dog once on each side and then stood trying to ground myself. I felt bad at not having done much but found relief in that I had done SOMETHING. My feeling is that it is better to do a little, with good technique, than to attempt a whole class where you’re heart is not in at and your technique suffers. I hope you regain your mojo soon
I would say if you feel that way after you’ve already started a class (and you’re using a video), you can always switch to a gentler one like many have suggested. The classes labeled Restorative or Hatha will probably give you what you need. Or if you are in an actual class in person or still want to give the video class a try (maybe it’s one you’ve done before and you know you’re usually fine with it) then just take lots of breaks. Child pose is always an option like the teachers say if you want to skip some vinyasas for instance or just sit back a moment and watch the video and use that as a learning opportunity to study the pose. I recently felt very much the way you described and couldn’t understand why. Later I realized that I was probably having bad allergy/sinus symptoms that were making me fell fatigued that day. So that’s also something to think about. Perhaps your body’s going through something that needs a little attention and it just gets more obvious on the mat.