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Tips For a Home Yoga Practice

Mat Motivation: Creating Your Yoga Practice at Home

Yoga may be blissful, but it ain't cheap. Prices range from $10 to $30 per class, and if you want to practice at least three times a week, that's a hefty load of dough. I'm not saying yoga is not worth the money; but in these tight economic times, your budget might not be as flexible as your hips. That's where a home yoga practice comes into play. It can be tough to motivate for a full 60- or 90-minute routine like you're used to at your studio, so here are some tips to help you find serenity on your mat at home.

  • Set up serene space. Find a spot in your home that is clean, free of clutter, free of distractions (like TV, pets, and kiddos), and a place that makes you feel calm. I like to practice on my deck outside, but you may prefer a quiet room that has a big window.
  • Pick a day and time to practice. Just as you have a class scheduled at your yoga studio that you can't miss, set up a class schedule at home. Start off with once a week, so it doesn't feel forced, and gradually add a day or more when you're ready.
  • Don't expect to do a full 90-minutes. Start off with something reasonable, like 20 minutes, and as you get used to doing yoga at home, your body will crave a longer practice.

For more tips keep reading

  • Pick up some new music. Silence may not be your thing, especially if you can hear your neighbor practicing their tuba solo, or your boyfriend is playing video games in the room next door. From soothing chimes and tabla beats, to loud and rhythmic chanting, there's so much to choose from and it can help increase your energy, which will inspire you to practice longer.
  • Pop in a yoga DVD. Unless you're a yoga instructor or practicing a set series of postures like in Ashtanga, it can be tough coming up with a sequence to fill up a long practice. So take the guesswork out of your home practice and follow along with Shiva Rea or Trudie Styler (two of my faves).
  • Print out a sequence. Not into a DVD? Grab some books and write out a sequence, or print out these that I've posted:
    Lower Body Yoga Sequence
    Tone Your Tush
    Total Body Yoga Flow
    Get Wow Arms
    Yoga Sequence to Combat Stress

  • Kick everyone out. If you can, practice when no one else is home so you won't be interrupted. If that's not possible, make an announcement that you're going into your "yoga studio," or put a note on the door so people will let you stretch in peace.
  • Practice with a friend or a few. Who said a home practice has to be solo? Practice side-by-side with your partner, roommate, best friend, or some neighbors down the street. The energy and breath of others does wonders with inspiring you to keep moving.

Do you have a regular home practice? Tell me about it in the comments section below.

Image Source: Thinkstock
Join The Conversation
sassymolassy sassymolassy 7 years
I'm a big fan of your total yoga body flow. For a while there, I was doing it every morning. It's so great and just takes about 15 min to do the whole routine on both sides of the body. I love that in 15 min you can both work on strength and get a little stretch in at the same time.
bigestivediscuit bigestivediscuit 7 years
Haha JazzTummy I was thinking the EXACT SAME THING - why is it that all stock photos of tree pose show the person with their foot on their knee?? Really annoys me!! Either place it above or below. But yes, I've been practicing yoga for over a year now at my gym and I do like to practice at home as well - I go twice a week at the gym and then work on anything I feel like working on at home. I find it so rewarding!
jazzytummy jazzytummy 7 years
I would also add that some studios offer "community" classes in their schedules which are cheaper than regular rates. It bugs me that the photo shows the girl in tree pose with her foot on her knee...the one place it should not be. Yes, I am a beyotch about stuff like that.
idanceinmycar idanceinmycar 7 years
As for the cost issue, my gym offers tons of workout classes, including yoga. I go twice a week and I feel like I get the most bang for my buck. I'd definitely look into gyms that offer an array of classes and such.
Advah Advah 7 years
I've had a pretty rough last month and a half and made a point of exercising and/or practising yoga pretty much every day. It made SUCH a difference, on the days I skip the session I can feel my mood go down again and my posture go back to bad. That's been my main motivation since I really deal with stress and work way better, I feel a bit more like myself. I'm also lucky I've got a big room so I've left my yoga mat in the middle of the room every day - that way I can't ignore it. Even if I only do 4 or 5 sun salutations when I get up, at least that's better than none and it only takes a few minutes. I also noticed it's best when I keep the environment flexible: some days I find it easier to focus when it's bright outside and I just got back from work, other days it's right before going to bed with some background music. Follow your mood and don't beat yourself if you skip a session! Yoga shouldn't be a cause of stress!
animatedpunk animatedpunk 7 years
(i was watching tv because I was using a yoga dvd)
animatedpunk animatedpunk 7 years
I tried to do some Yoga last night at home... but our apartment is just so small that I couldn't get comfortable. I moved our coffee table, but when stretched out, my feet or hands would still hit something, and the way I have to lay my mat to fit makes it hard to watch the tv without twisting my neck, and I just couldn't relax or get comfortable. :( Maybe I'll try doing it outside on the deck one day...
Soniabonya Soniabonya 7 years
thanks for the tips Fit. I've been getting into yoga and have been wanting to practice at home. :) going to look into the DVDs as well .
Susmita Susmita 7 years
I have been trying to do 20-30 minutes several times a week at home, in lieu of going to a yoga class (due to both time and money constraints). It has been hard to keep it up -- several weeks went by when I did no yoga at all, and most weeks if I do it twice a week, that's a good week!
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