This question has surely come up in your mind many times. Maybe you were feeling tired, going to be late for class, or planned to practice on your own. We’ve all been there when the question comes up, should I go to yoga class?
Synergy in Group Practice
The concept of synergy definitely applies to Sadhana, or spiritual practice, when a group of people get together.
Negative thoughts and feelings can feel bigger when you’re on your own. Having people around you who do the same practice gives support, helping you find your inner strength mentally and physically to maintain your practice.
On your own, you might only do half of your practice compared to doing more if you were in a group setting. The group energy helps lift your own to be more strong and positive.
A Balanced Practice
If you’ve been practicing for a long time already and know what to do and what your body needs, you might feel that you’d have a better practice on your own. Your personal practice does feel really wonderful. You can go at your own pace depending where your body feels tight.
These are some really good reasons why self-practice on your own can be appropriate. Still, there are good reasons to attend a yoga class.
One good reason is that you’re human. You’re wired to seek out things which feel good and avoid those that don’t. You likely do less of certain asanas because of your body’s limitations, they’re challenging, or you simply don’t like them.
Sometimes the things you avoid are the very things that you might need, and doing more of what feels good exacerbates our imbalances. So doing the things that you don’t want to do is exactly what is needed. It might take a while (maybe even years!) before your feelings about those practices change.
A Hard Look Inside
When you don’t make it to class, you likely rationalize your choice with various reasons. Do you notice that the same reasons keep popping up? Does that same reason pop up in other situations? If you take a hard look, you may see patterns show up in different areas of your life.
Why do you avoid certain practices, and why do you veer toward others? Are you able to bring an unbiased view on what’s happening inside you at these times? Through such inquiry, you can understand yourself better and continue growing spiritually. Yoga is all about getting to know yourself, after all.
Remember, you started practicing yoga because you needed change. You continued because it feels good to practice. The effects of your yoga practice linger, but they aren’t permanent.
Keep practicing to maintain your overall good health. If you find yourself rationalizing why you should skip the next class, dig a little deeper. You’ll probably regret not going, so give yourself a little push and go to class! You know you’ll feel good afterward.