I've been doing yoga classes for the last year or so, and I've been contemplating quitting.
I'm taking an hour and fifteen minute "relaxation yoga" class where we spend most of the class on the floor, doing vaguely sexual poses. I started taking it because I wanted to improve my flexibility and decrease my musculoskeletal pain. I'm not entirely sure if it's done those things. Maybe a little?
The thing is, I hate the class. I dread it every week. I don't enjoy it when I'm doing it. I occasionally injure myself in the class. During the meditation at the end, I am completely unable to turn my brain off. But at the same time, I feel like.... I don't know, maybe it's good for me. Maybe I should try harder. Sometimes I feel really good after the class.
I also do yoga during the week. I have the Yoga Studio app on my phone that one of you recommended. Maybe that's enough.
Find a different studio or instructor. Yoga should help you if you're in the right class. There's some bad yoga out there though.ReplyDelete
I find more 'athletic' yoga more relaxing. I also find ballet classes relaxing too. Try something that gets YOU in the zone, then you will get benefits.ReplyDelete
There are so many different types of yoga. Consider trying different ones before quitting. Ballet classes for adults are awesome too. They are a great, complete workout and very relaxing at the same time. Does wonders for posture and flexibility. I was never as fit as I was while I did ballet.ReplyDelete
I did a few different classes and this was the best by far. Yet I still hate it...Delete
I hate those relaxation yoga classes. I usually like a lot of cardio and find power yoga to be better. Sometimes it is harder than I would like (sometimes I do just want a stretchy yoga but not for relaxation) by the time we get to the lay like you are dead pose, I'm in the zone for that.ReplyDelete
Definitely quit if you don't like going. I used to do Tai Chi which I loved. It did give me a one hour mental vacation because of the concentration needed to be correct. There are a lot of options out there so find out what works for YOU and enjoy it.ReplyDelete
If you are dreading the class, it isn't doing anything for you. Try a different instructor/class/studio/type. The phone app is OK, but a live instructor can help more.ReplyDelete
Me, I've found a place that does seated (I have balance issues) Tai Chi with a few yoga poses. I don't know if it really helps, (I think there has been some improvement in the balance department) but at least I'm trying something and the hour is a high spot in the week. DO keep trying.
If a patient came to you saying "every time I I dread it.I don't enjoy it when I'm doing it. I occasionally injure myself while doing it and when I try to focus, I am completely unable to turn my brain off," what you suggest?ReplyDelete
Tai Chi is a good form of exercise; most forget (or never knew) it originated as a martial art. Those can, paradoxically, be very relaxing and beneficial as well.
If your goal is to increase flexibility and decrease musculoskeletal pain, maybe what you need to do is something else entirely.ReplyDelete
I started seeing a physical therapist who focuses on movement retraining, and it made a huge difference. I don't have to wear foot orthotics anymore, and the stress-induced shoulder and neck pain occurs a lot less frequently. I do about 40 minutes of PT exercises each day plus varying amounts of running, and would recommend it highly. You do have to find a really good PT with the right approach, but-- it's really changed my experience of my body.
I do therapeutic exercises daily. It gets to the point where I don't know what's helping, so I'm afraid to stop anything.Delete
I'm impressed you've kept it up for that long if you're not that into it. I've done a bit here and there but I can never seem to be able to keep it up. The Medic MindReplyDelete
I would quit. I took yoga for a year as well to better my posture from long shifts and it didn't really improve much. I got into running and weights this year and it's been great!ReplyDelete
If you hate it, stop it. Find something else.ReplyDelete
Life is short.ReplyDelete
Trust yourself that this teacher or this activity is not your cup of tea at this time.
Stop going for sure! It just isn't working out, and that's fine and nothing to be worried about.ReplyDelete
Also, I can't imagine how turning your brain off, even if it WERE possible, would help you meditate at all. I'd highly advise doing mindfulness meditation instead. I use breath as my focus for this, as this seems to be the most popular. It's pretty simple stuff, and doesn't involve turning your brain off, quite the opposite really.
I do (hot) yoga 2-3 times a week. I don't know if the temperature makes much difference, but I've enjoyed non-hot classes as well. The major thing for me is that I much prefer "flow" classes over "regular" ones. By the end of it I'm tired (and sweaty) enough that even though I might still have stuff on my mind, it tends to feel less significant. There's little to no meditation involved (varying somewhat with instructor).ReplyDelete
I'm late to the party, and everyone has already made the really good suggestions to try different classes or teachers, even if you thought you had surveyed the yoga landscape pretty well.ReplyDelete
I'm a big believer in the value of yoga, and I do it once or twice a week and have for years. One thing you might try is to stop making yourself do a class or an app and just set aside 10 minutes 2-3 times a week and do one or two poses that your body is calling for. Maybe they'll always be your favorites; maybe they will be more or less challenging; whatever. Just do what feels good and right to you.
And don't worry so much about focusing on meditation. Yes, ideally we would all be able to hit this lovely zen state where we are 100% in the moment and practicing the true yoga of meditation in addition to the asanas. But this is real life; if it makes you enjoy your 10 minutes more, put your favorite music to play on your phone while you practice. I have been known to do 10 minutes of yoga while listening to The Smiths; sometimes, that's what your body and your mind need.