Monday, July 13, 2009

Home Practice

The question I am asked more often by students than any other is "How do I practice at home?" The most honest answer is really that you have to find the answer to that question for yourself. The biggest mistake I make in my personal practice is trying to do too much. Somewhere between those two statements are the suggestions I give to help students make the transition from dropping in to a class to really developing a practice.

Here are some of the suggestions I give that have come out of my own practice. Please comment with tips of your own that might be helpful to all of us who do home practice!

#1 Start Small
It's easy to feel overwhelmed if you try to go from a class once a week to 6 days a week home practice. You may end up not doing any practice at all beacuse it just seems to daunting to get started. Try starting with the goal of doing a few sun salutation A and B three times a week. When you have a routine and are consistent, then add the first few standing poses and a short closing sequence. Build the home practice slowly over time.

#2 Practice with a friend
It's more fun and you will help to keep each other motivated.

#3 Stay connected with a teacher.
Drop into a class with a teacher when you can. If there are no classes in your area or you can't make the class due to other responsibilities, travel to a workshop once or twice a year. It helps to keep you motivated, challenged, and it's a good idea to have a teacher observe your practice from time to time.

These have been helpful for me as where I live now is several hours from the nearest Mysore class. It's amazing how grateful I am to practice with my teachers now that I only see them a couple times a year!

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