Self-Practice Gone Stale? Five Tips to Reinvigorate Your Yoga Practice

Self-Practice Gone Stale? Five Tips to Reinvigorate Your Yoga Practice

Picture this. It’s early, and you decide to start the morning right and roll out your mat. You flow through some sun salutations, warrior poses, and maybe a few balancing poses. Inspiration wanes and you proceed to a quick savasana before breakfast.

It wasn’t a bad practice. But it felt perfunctory, mechanical, and stale. Miles away from the deep, spiritual practice you once had. Been there?

Building a Strong Self-Practice

While every yogi aims to have a strong self-practice, sometimes we find ourselves getting onto our mat without really knowing what to do. Or maybe we find ourselves repeating the same well-trodden sequence without responding to exactly what our bodies need at that moment.

We all have times where we find ourselves Groundhog Day-ing it through our practice, and just getting it done, instead of deeply connecting with the ancient practice of yoga. When you do find yourself feeling like this, here are five tips to help you reconnect with your yoga practice.

1. Take a New Class

While the aim is to develop a self-practice that you can take with you anywhere, attending new and different classes will inspire you with fresh sequences, poses, and instructions, all of which you will want to practice at home.

While searching to revamp my practice I have taken a whole range of different classes. These include laughing yoga, yoga with tarot cards, mums and bubs Iyengar yoga, and a yoga class where the teacher did not speak, but modeled the poses and clicked his tongue when the poses changed.

You don’t have to try such an eclectic mix. Simply finding a new teacher or slightly different style can work wonders to inspire you. Most yogis will ebb and flow through many different styles throughout their lifetime, depending on their age, life stage, and needs at this moment in time. Maybe it’s time for you to shift your practice. Either way, you will learn something new.


2. Explore Pranayama

Sometimes our practice can be somewhat rushed. We find ourselves losing the spiritual component and deep connection to our breath, moving through yoga more as if it were an exercise regime. Remembering pranayama, taking time to connect with our prana, our life force, can do wonders to help us reconnect with the soul of the yoga and with our own vital energy.

3. Have a Theme

This is something I find works wonders for me. As a yoga teacher, I often structure my classes around a theme. Maybe it’s an “advanced” yoga pose I want to get into, so the focus is on warming up and strengthening the muscles to support that pose.

Or maybe it focuses on a series of poses, such as balance. I’ll intertwine balance poses throughout the sequence, coupled with meditations on mental and emotional balance. It could be a piece of yogic philosophy, meditation, or could relate to the seasons or time of day.

Whatever the theme, having a focus for your practice can help you structure your time on the mat and bring clarity concerning what you want to achieve.


4. Perform a Body Scan

Taking a few minutes to center yourself and scan your body before moving can really improve your practice. I always like to take some time to feel my body and to locate areas of tension and tightness.

Once I have done this, it’s easy to consider which poses I need, as I have a clear idea of which areas need releasing. So, let your body be your guide.

Begin your practice in savasana and slowly tune into the body, from the crown of your head to the tips of your toes. The body always ends up being the best teacher when you take the time to listen to it.


5. Cultivate a Sankalpa

While tuning into your body helps you choose physical poses, setting an intention shapes your mental state for the practice.

Sometimes, when your mind is wandering and jumping around, you need to just focus on being present. Other times, you will need to focus on letting go of expectations when you enter into a pose.

It’s great to set an intention that you can shift your attention back to whenever you lose your way. Whatever it is, your intention, known as a sankalpa, is vital to your yoga practice.

So, the next time you find your practice uninspiring, take the time to try these five tips to bring your yoga practice back to life.

Yogini Soul Staff Writer: Stephanie JohnsonStephanie Johnson, CYI, Yogini Soul Staff Writer, is an elementary school teacher, yoga teacher, meditation student and writer. She is looking for ways to explore this beautiful, crazy life that we have been gifted and to live it with meaning. Stephanie fell in love with yoga as a teenager and has since traveled across the globe in search of gaining knowledge and experiences to deepen her understanding of yoga, from her home country of Australia, to India and across Asia, to Chile, in South America, where she now lives with her partner and two sons. Connect with her on Instagram.

Medical Disclaimer: The information provided here in my article on the Yogini Soul website blog and on Yogini Soul social media pages is not intended to be a substitute for the professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment provided by your own Medical Provider. You agree and acknowledge that I am not providing medical advice. All matters regarding your health require supervision by a personal physician or other appropriate health care professional familiar with your current health status. Always consult a qualified personal health care provider before making any dietary or exercise changes. Yoga is not recommended for and is not safe for those with certain medical conditions. Always practice yoga and other exercise programs under the direct supervision and guidance of a qualified yoga instructor, in addition to the direction of your health care provider. The information provided herein is not to be used in any manner as a substitute for the direct guidance of a qualified yoga instructor. As with all situations, there are sometimes unknown individual risks and circumstances that can arise that cannot be foreseen that can influence or reduce results. You understand and agree that any mention of any suggestion or recommendation in this article on the Yogini Soul website blog and Yogini Soul social media pages is to be taken at your own risk, recognizing that there is a rare chance that illness, injury or even death could result, with no liability on my part or that of Yogini Soul, owned by Yogini Lifestyle LLC.

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