Yoga at Home vs. Yoga in a Studio
Happy Monday, Yogis!
Before I dive right into my experiences of an at-home and in-studio yoga practice, I wanted to introduce myself since it’s my first blog with Inspire! My name is Alana Speed, I am a senior (thank heavens) at the University of North Texas, majoring in public relations with a double minor in marketing and social science. I teach yoga at the UNT REC Center, as well as Inspire Yoga, and I recently I took an internship with Inspire to assist with all their marketing needs! So here we are!
I decided to write this blog not only because a good friend asked me of my opinion on the two different practices, but also because I know it’s a common question when a brand-new yogi decides to try yoga for the first time. So, why is finding the right balance of self-practice and practicing in a studio important for new, or even experienced, yogis? Here is my opinion of the two practices and their benefits:
Yoga At Home
- It’s all about YOU!
Literally. Whatever you need that day, maybe it’s a child’s pose for 15 minutes or a straight hour of just heart openers, you can take the time on your mat in the convenience of your own home and just be. The beauty of any kind of yoga is being able to get into your body, but spending time in a quiet room away from distractions (yes, even your ornery animals) allows you to focus on you, your breath, your body and your needs.
- No set time
I will be the first one to say, ain’t nobody got time to do all the things that are in your weekly planner. I get it, getting to a set time at a studio can be difficult. Sometimes I am lucky to get into the studio once or twice a week. That’s where setting aside 5 or maybe 10 minutes out of your day of breathing, stretching out or doing a few sun salutations can balance out your busy schedule. Before bed, with your cup of coffee or whenever you can, squeezing in a little self-practice is better than nothing. Taking time out for you is what matters!
Yoga In a Studio
Nothing is better than plopping your mat down next to a familiar face at your studio. Being able to come to a space, with like-minded people to breathe and connect with is truly a unique experience. There is a sense of motivation and support as you all sink into chair pose for the 18th time, with sweat dripping off your arms, all breathing in unison as you share a challenge, an intention and your energy with each other. I encourage you to introduce yourself to your mat neighbor before or after class and you’ll find even after just a few times coming to the studio, the space becomes your second home.
- Letting go of control
This is big for all my anxious yogis out there! As someone with the need to be in control of every move that’s happening next, being able to let go and be guided in the moment in the class is so powerful. Letting your mind slow down from the constant thinking, questioning, guessing where you should go next is important when practicing mindfulness. Often times yoga teachers will also have specific themes or lessons that you may not have thought about or brought up on your own. Their guidance and personal experience can help you dive deeper into your own practice.
- Alignment help
I had to add this extra one in there because it is extremely important (especially for newer yogis)! A lot of times when we’re in a pose, even if it feels perfectly fine, something may not be in the correct alignment. Yoga instructors have gone through specific, intensive teacher training to be able to give you the proper alignment to keep you safe! Not to mention, who is going to give you all the savasana love if you just practice at home?!
All in all, any kind of yoga is good yoga. Find the balance of spending time at home on your mat and getting into a studio to connect with other like-minded yogis. The most important take away is just to take time for yourself to slow down and strengthen your practice. I hope this inspires you to find your own balance! For class times check out Inspire’s website. Have a beautiful weekend, yogis!