Have you ever found yourself “stuck” in your yoga journey, struggling to deepen your practice and improve in areas that challenge you?
Or, are you looking for ways to start your own yoga practice (maybe you’ve been researching yoga poses for beginners) and are unsure of where to begin?
What about you advanced yoga practitioners who have developed a beautiful yoga practice that fits into your daily life with ease, but find you’re lacking inspiration?
Whatever obstacle you may face and wherever you may be on your yoga path, I guarantee that participating in a yoga challenge will hugely benefit your practice.
The first time I heard about these “yoga challenges” was a couple of years ago when a friend on Instagram invited me to join her for a 10-day forearm balance yoga challenge. I was intrigued by the idea and, since forearm balances have been a consistent “trouble area” for me, I welcomed the opportunity to delve deeper into that equally challenging and frustrating area of my practice.
After the 10-day challenge ended, I knew that these yoga challenges had to become part of my personal yoga practice. If you’re on the fence about joining a yoga challenge, here’s everything you’ll gain by participating!
One of the obvious benefits to joining a challenge is the tremendous source of motivation it offers. We all know accountability plays a huge role in helping us stay motivated in our efforts to reach our goals. Daily yoga challenges are an amazing tool in providing that consistent motivation!
I know there have certainly been times in my own yoga practice where I’ve found myself feeling “stagnant,” flowing from one favorite pose to the next without really pushing myself to venture outside of my comfort zone. But, seeing some of the yoga positions and variations that other challenge participants share can be a wonderful source of inspiration. After all, they say variety is the spice of life and it has certainly improved my yoga practice!
Let’s face it: being held accountable isn’t always easy or fun, but can be substantially beneficial in our own discipline to practice consistently. Maybe that means changing from practicing three times a week to developing a daily yoga practice at home. Or, perhaps it means increasing the length of time you’re devoting to yoga, or setting more time aside to work on a specific pose. Whatever it may be, the discipline required to check in and participate daily in a yoga challenge will work wonders for achieving your goals!
Tribe and Community
For those of you who joined us in YogaClub’s Facebook group, My Yoga Journey, for our last 30-day yoga challenge, I hope you all benefited from that deepened sense of community and belonging as much as I did! It’s such a gift to find a mix of like-minded individuals who have similar goals and are open to sharing their own unique dreams and stories. Yoga challenges are a wonderful way to find new friends with a shared common interest right from the start!
Want to join this community’s next yoga challenge? YogaClub’s Fall into Health challenge starts Tuesday, September 24! Join My Yoga Journey to learn more.
One of the regular components of a yoga challenge is the “goal,” whether it’s a forearm balance challenge like the first one I participated in, or a challenge that focuses on balance postures. Whatever the theme of the challenge may be, participating will help you take steps toward achieving your own yoga goals!
Another reason to join a yoga challenge is one that may seem less obvious, but is so very important: it takes you out of your comfort zone. We grow the most out of our comfort zones and participating in a yoga challenge may give you the push you need to welcome change and invite opportunity into your life. If participating in a yoga challenge makes you uncomfortable, take a deep breath and think about the positive things you can gain from opening up and sharing a little more about yourself. Who knows? Maybe your own vulnerability will invoke inspiration and be exactly what someone else in your challenge tribe needed to see.
OK, this last reason may not be true for everyone, but it’s been consistently true for me. I can't tell you how many times I’ve lost my balance trying a new pose, or have fallen over into a confusing tangle of my own arms and legs, laughing out loud at how silly I look. My kids have even sat there giggling at me while I try to figure out a new posture! It has become a regular source of light and laughter in my own home, and I hope you can find some humour in it all, too!
About the Author
Veronica is a mom of four with an extensive background in medicine and physical therapy. She started practicing yoga as a tool for managing PTSD and anxiety along with the daily stresses of “Mom Life.” She now teaches yoga within her own community, encouraging others (especially other busy moms) to discover the numerous benefits of yoga.