I heard someone say this the other day: "I should do yoga". But..she quickly followed "I don't like it".
She was physically fit, looked like she was in great shape. She talked about taking spin class, so she obviously kept active.
But she didn't like yoga.
At the time, I didn't say anything. What could I say? I love yoga. Everything about it. Practicing, teaching. It brings me great joy. Anything I say about yoga comes from that place. But no matter what I say, if someone doesn't like it, what I say won't matter.
It occurred to me the next day. She didn't like yoga. But most of what she was talking about was the poses, the asanas. I teach power yoga. I teach a practice that is based around the poses. But the poses are only a piece of the practice. The other pieces - breath, focus, compassion, joy, being present - the asanas are a chance to practice those. And those are the important pieces of yoga.
It made me wonder...did she practice those pieces in the other activities in her life? When she was doing whatever she was doing - spinning, running - was she focused on her breath? Was she focused? Was she present? I don't know about the compassionate piece, because I don't know how compassionate you can be with yourself when you're in a spin class:)
My Mother doesn't practice asana. But she gardens. She loves it. I'm pretty sure when she's gardening she's present. She's focused. It's her yoga.
I know other people who run, bike, paint, swim, write, pray. They do what they love. When they do what they love, they're present. They're focused.
So, to those who say they don't like yoga, but think they should do it I would say this...If you don't like the asanas, don't do them. But find something in your life that can be your yoga practice. Yes, your practice. Something that you do just because you love it. Because it brings you joy. Not something you do because you think you should or something you do that you think you need to master. Something you simply do.
And then come & take class with me...I'll change your opinion of the asanas too!