Taking a Break from Yoga

Why it is ok to take a break from yoga and what to do instead

For regular yoga practitioners, yoga, like breathing, is just a way of life. Doing yoga is a healthy habit but taking a break from it can be refreshing sometimes. However, for someone who maintains a regular yoga schedule, it can become a challenge to stay away from the practice. All the same, rigorous focus on yoga can change it from a self-care process to an arduous chore. Performing yoga ideally enables an individual to be balanced and carry on life with ease. And so, when it feels forced and burdensome, you may want to consider taking a break. Though this may sound strange, it is beneficial in the long run. So instead of feeling guilty for not rolling your mat, cherish your break.


Listed below are a few benefits of taking a break from yoga:


1. Exploring other means to be mindful

You can utilize your free time from yoga to try out other methods to engage yourself constructively. Consider reading a new book, taking a walk in the park and enjoying nature, sketching on the canvas, going on a long drive, gifting yourself a vacation, watering the plants, cooking a new recipe, or even writing a novel. There are several ways to align yourself with the present to live in the moment and be productive at the same time.


2. Getting some needed rest

The break enables your body and mind to get some much-needed rest for a while. Giving yoga a pause gives your muscles, connective tissues, and joints some rest. Consider relaxing on your couch and binge-watching your favorite movie or TV series. Take deep breaths at a frequent interval, loosen your shoulders, relax a little, and try different ways of inhaling. Activities such as these will help in re-energizing and rejuvenating yourself.


3. Avoiding unwanted burnout

Yoga is meant to energize your body, mind, and soul. It is supposed to help you find your inner peace and strengthen your core. Though it is not common for people to be burnt out by practicing yoga, it is not altogether impossible. Yoga is supposed to bring you in alignment with your true self. This helps in identifying your actual purpose. You may start strong with a clear intent but trying to force your way through can potentially cause injury. Forcing poses, straining muscles are indications of burning out and taking a break from yoga can ease that.


4. Listening to your body

Performing yoga can at times take a toll on the body. On some days, exercising yoga can make you feel like a mess and drain you of energy. Doing yoga makes you extra attentive and aware, which can sometimes be a lot to handle. It is not healthy to practice yoga by pushing your body to its limits and over-exerting yourself to the point of exhaustion. In such cases, taking a break from yoga helps you listen to your body and pay attention to its needs.


Here are some of the things you could consider doing while on a break from yoga:


Experimenting on other exercising techniques

If a forced break is taken due to existing physical problems, you may consider going easy on yourself. However, if this is not the case a break is a great opportunity for you to get creative with your fitness routine. Eliminating yoga from the equation can help in integrating various contrasting forms of workout into your schedule. It can enable you to focus on adding extra laps in the pool or improving your running time.


Deepening yoga philosophy

Though this doesn’t count as taking a break from yoga, it will redirect your focus from direct practice to yoga philosophy. Try out new breathing and meditation techniques. Figure out how pranayama is helping you to live a balanced life. Discover more mantras and mudras or even consider reaching out for the yoga sutras. It is noteworthy that the principles of this ancient practice – mindfulness, compassion, stamina, patience, and strength – stay with us in the long term.


Retreating to re-immerse

You can always take yoga with you on holidays but having a holiday from yoga may help you fall back in love with it intensely than before. Taking a break from yoga won’t make you forget your steps and postures. Your muscles remember and will respond every time you get back from the break. It is okay to keep yourself away from yoga for a while, as it is going to stick by your side always!


Yoga is a healthy practice that uplifts your mood and boosts your spirituality. It is also a fabulous way to maintain your fitness and composure. While it is alright to practice it regularly, care should be taken to avoid overexertion, which can strain the body and mind.

So, it is important to discern when you need a break from yoga and utilize it effectively to gain the maximum benefits.


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