Yoga. Many people do it, and this year, I have discovered why. It is an awesome way to get a good bit of exercise, but it is also so much more. Yoga, I have found for me, is a lot like running (a form of exercise that I have been addicted to for over 9 years). I love the intense workout of a long run, but the part that appeals most to me is the way I connect with my body: in breath, muscles, and mind.
When the first of January came around this year, I made a resolution that I would finally begin doing yoga. I’ve had the dearest of friends and family try and convince me for years to pick up yoga–and, I ignored them. It wasn’t because I didn’t think yoga would be beneficial. After thousands of years of folks practicing yoga, and many yoginis I know having a completely blissful outlook on life as well as a remarkably toned body, I figured there had to be something to it. The main thing that was stopping me was the “class” aspect of it. I didn’t want to attend a class. It’s just not my thing. I avoid gyms at all costs because I’ve never enjoyed the vibe in any I’ve been to, and I prefer solitary exercises, which is why I love running.
I have attended yoga classes in the past, and although the poses and philosophy behind it very much appeal to me, the idea of being surrounded by a bunch of people I don’t know (and even those I do) in a class structure pretty much killed it for me. And, while I appreciate the idea that having a trusted yogini to show you the ropes so injuries can be prevented and talk you through each pose, it wasn’t enough to make this introvert want to join in. I kid you not when I say nothing about a class structure really appeals to me. Even during college, I gravitated to the classes where I could be independent 90% of the time even though the other 10% of the time I loved the interaction I got with other class members. This was one of the best perks for me majoring in fine art. I’m not shy; in fact, when I am around people, I cherish the interaction I have with them, and I feel quite comfortable being myself. I just find that I need a lot of alone time to be happy/functional–probably more than most people. I work best alone, I think best alone, and frankly, to be blunt, being around a lot of people in a regularly scheduled fashion can really deplete my energy. And, so, I felt that given the encouraged (and sometimes times stressed) class structure of yoga, that this wonderful form of exercise just wasn’t for me.
So, when I was contacted by MyYogaOnline to see if I’d like to give online yoga courses a whirl, I was thrilled. I had already begun researching solo yoga at home, and I had a rudimentary knowledge of yoga from the prior classes I had attended, so I wasn’t exactly afraid of injury or complete lack of understanding. Plus, the day I received the email was the exact day I decided I was going to commit to yoga, class or no class. Quite serendipitous, I thought.
My Yoga Online provides concise and educational content related to yoga and healthy living. Whether you want to learn yoga, Pilates, or meditation, this website provides videos with clear instructions. It makes the idea of doing yoga anywhere, anytime–but still with the structure of a class–completely doable. Not to mention, one month of unlimited access is generally less than the cost of 1 pop-in class in a yoga studio.
I am so happy I gave it a try. I feel stronger. I look more toned (my hubby says I look extremely strong and stable when doing poses) and best of all, I’m much more optimistic about things, and in general I feel way less stressed out. Happier even. And, now I have proudly joined the ranks of all the people who proclaim how wonderful yoga is—and if I’m desperate enough in the future, I’d probably be okay with popping in for a class with a friend… maybe. MyYogaOnline has a ton of great features, but one of my favorite parts is the vast array of videos they offer—which is a lot like having a yogini show you the ropes in the comfort of your own home. The instructors talk you through each session step by step, offering gentle an clear advice on how to properly execute each pose. It’s a lot like what I was getting out of a class structured yoga session, without the class.
I also think that they are reasonably priced, something that I cam’t exactly say about the yoga studios that offer drop in sessions in my neighborhood for around $50 USD a pop. For $9.95 a month, or $89.95 per year, you get unlimited access to an incredible amount of yoga how-to, and so much more, including a forum filled with members who are eager to learn and interact with each other. It’s a lot like having a fully functional yoga studio at your fingertips, anytime you need it.
They are offering a trial membership to my lovely readers if you use this link: www.myyogaonline.com/m/bloggers
Give it a try. If you’re like me and you think you may be able to benefit from yoga, but the idea of doing it in a class structure stresses you out to the point of needing a good long child pose, then MyYogaOnline may very well be just for you.