Last year a lot of the things that make people scare of yoga have been the center of discussion. In my opinion this is a good thing. I’ve learnt one thing about fear from my yoga practice – nothing in reality is as scary as we think of it in our mind. For example, practicing Handstand more often makes me less afraid of it. The same is true for whole yoga practice-the more we confront challenging things the better we get on them.
Given below are 5 scariest things that most of us often think about practicing yoga and my take on why are they not so scary:
Injuries. Injuries are the first scariest thing that any of us can think about yoga. But I think hat they’re not as scary as the physical discomfort and stress that may hit your mind and body if you don’t practice yoga. The threat of getting injured is very real-both teachers and students may fall on the floor-but that applies to some tough yoga poses (like handstand and arm balances) only. There are many easier poses too that won’t hurt you hard if you do them properly. You can further decrease the risk of being injured by finding an advanced and highly skilled yoga teacher. And if you don’t push yourself for doing the insecure poses then you can nearly bypass the risk of getting injured.
Power-hungry teachers. I absolutely hate hearing the tales of teachers who want to take advantage of their relationships with students. You can either choose a good yoga teacher or you can adopt a guru. But either way, you should not be afraid to say « Nope. It doesn’t seem fine to me, teacher. »
Religious indoctrination. While yoga can certainly be a religious experience, you should have the freedom to choose your own way at it. You should be allowed to take your heart to the things that resonate with you while leaving the rest. I can’t forget the day at which I brought a friend of mine with me to a yoga class. We just unrolled our mats in the studio and sat down, and immediately we saw everyone’s eyes widen as she pointed to the Shiva statue that was situated at the front of the room. She asked me, « What is that? » And I said it’s just a statue. She responded, « Well, I’m not gonna worship it. » OK fine. Neither am I.
Commercialism. It’s absolutely true that yoga teachers are out there to get your money-that’s how they make a living. In fact, in the USA yoga is a big big business with an industry of $10.3 billion per year. Sometimes it feels like someone is trying to sell us something no matter where we go. From expensive yoga clothes to yoga retreats to yoga doodads-how to find out the things that really matter? Well, here’s a clue: You don’t NEED anything as long as you’ve your body with you. Commercialism of yoga diverts the focus of practice to things that don’t matter. So focus on your body and practice instead of those bells and whistles.
Not fitting in. Walking into a yoga class for the first time can be scary if you don’t have any knowledge about yoga. Thanks to those teachers who are working extremely hard to make the practice a convenient and pleasing experience for everyone. Yoga is for everyone in this world, so remove the fear of not fitting in from your mind.