I’m coming back to my series on self-care to talk to you about why yoga is the best form of self-care for moms. After last week’s scare, I needed to go to yoga more than ever!
It’s easy to skip my weekly yoga sessions, but when I don’t go I suffer for it. Not only does my anxiety start to ramp up, but my body starts to ache in places it shouldn’t. I’m more irritable and short-fused with my kids, so my family suffers too.
All moms can benefit from yoga. Our bodies go through so much when we have babies and they need self-love to get their strength back after carrying around babies for 9 months. Our organs and ligaments are moved and stretched in ways we never thought possible when we dreamt of having babies. Yoga can help moms realign their mind, body, and soul.
I used to think that you had to be super flexible and able to sit still for long periods of time to do yoga.
I pictured a yogi standing on his head or a buddhist monk sitting in silence bowing with his hands at his heart. Although that might be the goal for some types, it’s not always true.
Moms Can Do Yoga Too
Maybe my misperception about yoga came from the fact that the first time I went to a class, I found myself staring at the teacher with a lost in space look on my face for 90% of the class.
I think that time I had picked the wrong class. There are yoga classes that are tailored more to beginners though and some don’t require much skill at all.
I love to go to Yin Yoga at my gym. According to Yogi Approved “Yin is a slow, soothing, and meditative style of yoga that targets the deep connective tissues, bones, joints, fascia, and ligaments in the body.”
You hold most poses for around 5 minutes so that you can get deeper into each pose. The biggest challenge here is not wiggling and being still. But the best part about the class I go to is the teacher reminds you that it doesn’t have to be perfect.
Just showing up is an accomplishment and there shouldn’t be any judgment for how good our bad you do each pose.
BENEFITS OF DOING YOGA
The stress we endure as moms builds up over time. If we don’t do anything about it, it can be traumatic to our bodies emotionally and physically.
Our Yin instructor constantly reminds us that we should be doing something every day to reduce some of that stress that our body is holding. It can be as simple as taking 5 minutes a day to do child’s pose and focus on taking deep breaths.
5 Benefits Of Yoga For Moms
IT HELPS WITH STRESS RELIEF
By doing deep breathing and meditating techniques during yoga, you retrain your brain to slow down. Alot of different emotions can come up in Yin Yoga. Not only are you going deeper into poses, but you are going deeper into your heart.
Sometimes I start crying without warning. The first time this happened, I thought something was wrong with me! I was so embarrassed and tried to hide my tears, but the instructor must have seen me.
She said to let whatever emotions stir up be what they are. To notice them and be aware of them, but not to judge yourself for them. It can be really cleansing!
IT LENGTHENS YOUR MUSCLES AND MAKES YOUR BODY STRONGER
Yin yoga targets lengthening and stretching your deep connective tissue. The more you do this, the more you actually slow your body’s aging process. I don’t know about you, but after having kids, I feel like my body has aged 100 years so I can use all the help I can get to restore my youth!
IT HELPS INCREASE YOUR BALANCE
You won’t do too many difficult poses that require you to stand on your head during Yin Yoga, but staying in a pose for 5 minutes is still challenging. Some people even find this type of yoga harder than other types like Ashtanga which is super fast paced.
IT HELPS CLEAR YOUR MIND
How many hundreds of things do moms have on our mind at any given time? When you go to yoga, you are encouraged to focus on the here and now.
It may take you a few moments or even a few sessions to be able to turn off the never-ending to-do list in your head, but it helps to have a quiet space with little distractions.
IT CAN BE A PLACE TO MAKE FRIENDS
If you find the right yoga studio, it can be a great place to make friends with other moms who understand the struggles of mom life. You have to get out there and try to build your village.
People who do yoga are almost always more calm for at least a few minutes afterward. You can take advantage of that and strike up a conversation with the other mom’s in the class. You could comment on your neighbor’s yoga mat or ask them where they got their yoga pants. You never know. You might connect with someone new!
Yoga may not be for everyone, but for me it’s a must. If I don’t go to yoga at least once a week, I notice a big difference in my mood and my body. I hope you’ll give it a try!
Even if there isn’t a yoga studio near you, you can find some pretty good videos online. If you just can’t find the time to do it by yourself, there is a really cute program on youtube that you can do with your kids called Cosmic Kids. My kids love it!
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