I have been writing a journal writing a short note about each yoga class I am attending.
I told myself I should write an article to review the changes I feel on my body after attending 100 yoga sessions (excluding my self-practice at home). The classes I attended were with minimum 1 hour per session. So I clocked at least 100 hours of yoga practice. I would like to know what have Yoga done to me in 100 hours of practice.
I started regular exercise in mid 2016, by running at the park near my house. I knew I love running, but I also knew I would not start the exercise if my health problem was not serious enough. The pain from my back and neck was killing me badly since I joined my ex-company and was unbearable in 2015 and 2016. I remember I could not sit still on my chair with straight back for as short as 15 minutes and I would move, hunching my back, folding my legs to make my back feel easier. I also sprained my neck 3 times in a year. I cut down my usage on phones which hurt my neck and started doing more exercise. However these did not help my problems.
I was aware that stress from work was one of the reason to my body pain. In Early 2017, I started meditation in early morning for 15-30 minutes each day (I wrote about it here), which it helps to calm my mind and to stay focused for my day better, most importantly I need to learn how to relax my full body.
In March 2017, I started to do some light yoga after my meditation session, after I did some reading about how Yoga can complement running training. I started by following some videos from youtube instructed by yoga teachers (I love videos from Tim, his video gives me a sense of calmness), and one day I decided to learn by attending class with actual teacher. The journey of attending class by class then started which I am now practicing yoga almost everyday.
The changes I found after the 100 classes are:
- Improvement on my neck and back: I could sit with straight back for longer time during work, though I will stand up and move my body every 1 or 2 hours of sitting
- More focused mind: This is a bonus to me, I was hoping to achieve this by meditation (I wrote about it here), but practicing Yoga poses is like meditating, you try to focus on your breathing, poses, dristhi, and nothing else during your practice, so it is naturally helping you to stay focus
- Stronger and fit body: This is another bonus to me, I did not expect practicing yoga could help me build a fit body, I knew it will make my body more flexible. But there are many vinyasa in my practice, especially I am practicing Ashtanga yoga, which the sequence consists of many vinyasa with ‘Jump back’ and ‘Jump through’ and a lot of lifting body
By the time I posted this article, I already attended 145 sessions and I knew that the practice will only keep going on, knowing Yoga does not only help my current back and neck problems but the bonus benefits Yoga is giving to me and most importantly, the happiness and fulfillment within which I could get from my practice. The journey will never end.