I have often been asked what do I receive from my yoga practice? It's a great question because it reminds me of the reasons why I practice, and teach, so that others can also receive the gifts yoga has to offer. But the question of what are the gifts you receive can actually be a bit different from your why.
Your WHY might be to stay healthy, to have more energy, to be better able to serve those you love, to gain happiness, to become flexible etc. So yes we can receive those things from our practice, but they are not the only gifts. They maybe the initial reasons you were drawn to yoga, but a 'gift' is so much more than a result.
Different people receive different gifts from their practice, but it is definitely worth reflecting and asking - what gifts do you receive?
Over the years I have been teaching and sharing yoga, many people feel they have experienced some form of healing or release through yoga. Sometimes subtle, sometimes...
"Hā ki Roto - Hā ki Waho" -" Breathe in - Breathe out"
Sometimes this simple instruction is all we can do in life and yoga!
"Don't forget to breathe", as a great teacher once told me many years ago.
Sounds simple, but it is the simplest things that can sometimes be the most profound, both in practice, and in practice off the mat- also known as - life!
A simple way to tell how you are doing in yoga is- to be aware of your breath.
āroa hā = breath awareness ( see how close this is to aro-ha )
In our classes the awareness of the breath, the Hā in Māori ( also sometimes known as hau, ngā , manawa and tā to name a few of the words to describe the breath ) is all important, as important as what you do with your body, if not more.
Hā also means your essence.
The breath is the bridge between our bodies and our mind in yoga. It contains the life force, and links us to our divine nature.