“I can’t do yoga I’m not flexible enough.” I’ve heard this excuse over and over again. In a world where everything is put on display, all you need to do is get on Instagram and type in #yoga or #yogisofig to see people twisted into impossible positions or floating on one hand. So it’s easy to see why people feel this way.
But that is not what yoga’s about. People don’t stand around in class seeing who can balance on their head the longest. Most of the time people aren’t even looking at you. The focus is inward. On yourself and your breathing. Feeling the stretch in your muscles as you transition into another pose.
Inversions are simply a deeper form of a particular pose. Sometimes the most basic poses are the hardest. For me, it was a plank. Laying there at a 90 degree angle with your elbows tucked in at your sides. Hovering. Your toes and fingers pressing into the floor. There is such a sense of relief when you lift one leg off the floor. You actually feel lighter. (strange I know) I can only imagine how it feels to slowly lift yourself up until your hands are the only thing on the floor.
I know I romanticized everything in that last paragraph but that’s truly how it feels. If you’re not flexible whatsoever (my hunni) yoga will feel like cruel and unusual punishment. But that feeling is only temporary. If you stick with it, pretty soon you’ll start sounding like me and taking pictures of yourself doing handstands in the grocery store.
Don’t psyc yourself out of taking a class just because you feel your flexibility is sub-par. Even the best yogis are stronger on one side than the other. That’s why it’s referred to as a practice. Everyone is always striving to do better. There is no finish line. Over time your flexibility will increase.
So the next time someone mentions a yoga class, try it out. After all “yoga takes you into the present moment. The only place where life exists.”