The single thing I love most about yoga is one’s ability to practice it virtually anywhere at any given time. A mat may absolutely get you in the yoga mindset; but whether you’re in a studio, at the park, or on the beach, you can be down to downward dog with nothing but a clear intention and a strong breath.
What better way to soak in the summer sun than to salute the sun, literally! Think outside the yoga studio box and get your asana outside. There are many advantages to taking your yoga practice to the streets.
Benefits of Outdoor Yoga
- Absorbing some serious Vitamin D: For those of us living in northern climates, we take advantage of the sun when we can get it. Allow the sun energy to power your flow!
- Experiencing an extra balance challenge: A sandy beach or grassy park may look level, but these cushy surfaces will pose an added challenge during balancing postures. Remember, balance isn’t about being completely still. Where you are in the moment is exactly where you need to be.
- Discovering a new perspective: Sometimes a simple change in scenery allows us to shift our perspective or see something in a new light.
Now I’m not guaranteeing the great outdoors will always offer a perfectly positive experience. You may run into potential challenges, so prep yourself.
Outdoor Yoga Obstacles
- Difficulty finding focus and concentration: Loud street noise and curious onlookers may cause your mind to wander. Setting an intention for your practice may assist you in staying present.
- Uneven ground with unwanted critters: Mother Nature isn’t always on our side! Work with the most level ground you’ve got and forget the rest. But don’t forget to bring the bug spray!
- Sun in your eyes: If you can practice with sunglasses, do it. Otherwise, I recommend practicing with closed eyes. Sometimes that can offer a newfound focus and connection with your intention.
As with any yoga practice, allow these challenges to stretch you (both mentally and physically) and be grateful for your strong, powerful body.