A significant lesson, taught to us during a yoga teacher training course is how to build awareness about ourself and get in touch with our subconscious mind. Svadhaya, a Sanskrit word, literally translates to self learning, or working on oneself. Many scriptures, lessons of Vedas as well as yogic teaching speak vividly on this term. The study of the self is time and again, given high importance because ultimately what really matters is our study, our work, and our inner wellness that underlines our outer self. Often students of yoga teacher training course are lost after completion of the course. Yoga experts advicenovices on commencing a dedicated home practice and refining their skills, without giving much attention to how classes progressed back in the school and only listening to your inner voice.
Just as any other form, even yoga demands time and effort in order to master the goals. Here are some of reasons how a self driven regular home yoga practice will help you:
An obvious outcome of the goal of self-practice is self-growth. When we practice on our own without a teacher or an instructor guiding us, a sense of responsibility increases in our attitude. We understand that it is our job to lead, instruct, help and take care of ourselves. Lack of immediate help, enhances the body’s response to the practice as well. This is a great tool to nurture one’s own growth in yoga and transform even the difficult poses into easy to do ones.
During a class, we might struggle with poses and often due to lack of enough time. As the class has to progress as per the group, we have to give up on the pose for that moment, to come back to it the next time it is taken up. On the contrary, in a home practice, the time limitation for a particular pose seizes. We can try one or many poses, again and again and keep at it, till we master it. Try, try, try again until you succeed, can be truly accepted during the self-study classes.
In the silence, where no one else but only you are present, a true understanding of the body permeates the atmosphere. The breath can be heard clearly, body’s language can be interpreted easily and the real lesson starts to unfold. As a practitioner we can become aware of what our mind is telling us and incorporate that into the poses. For instance, if in Warrior Pose, the tailbone should be tucked in. In a yoga class, you might overlook the intricate alignment cues, while you are practicing alone, you can correct the twist in the waist, square the hips, tuck the tail bone in, distribute weight evenly and align the feet.
As you work alone in your living room without spending anything at all but only your time, a yoga practice alone can increase your knowledge to a new height. With research and questioning, we can learn about new things, or read our notes in detail, for answers to the questions that arises in self-practice. A consistent self-practice unlocks the door to a repertoire of wisdom, which will be with you wherever you go and even when you teach in future.
Gradually, your yoga practice will start to improve, increasing your confidence levels not only during the pose but even when you talk about a pose with your family and friends. The reason for this is, you will be in a better position to understand the alignment cues, the necessary modifications and flow of the breath required during the practice.
Each time you step onto the mat alone, invoke the presence of your gurus and chant the mantras. Gather yourself and be aware of the presence of your guru & allow her/his voice to guide you into different poses. Enhancing your connection with yourself and the guru, a healthy aptitude towards self-practice will enable you make that shift in your practice needed for a dedicated yogis.