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Yoga or exercise?

The sages of old never meant for asana or poses in yoga to represent the whole of yoga. When we practice yoga without any other meditative practices , then our focus becomes the physical body, We tend to focus on those parts of our body we don't like and as a result we lose connection with our breath and at a deeper level ourselves.

Yoga gives us many tools to embrace all of us, the good , the bad, the jiggly and the soft. When we embrace all that we are ,we transform how we look at ourselves, If we embrace asana as a deeper practice that includes how we treat ourselves and others ( yamas and niyamas), breathing techniques ( Pranayama), sensory withdrawal, ( pratyahara), concentration, (Dharana), meditation (dhyana) and finally liberation. (samadhi).

When we can embrace it all, we can then experience yogas benefits on every level of being,physical, mental, spiritual and emotional. Yoga then becomes a powerful vehicle for change and an antidote to self loathing. IF we can start to approach yoga with curiosity and leave our egos out of it , we may find that we truly appreciate those areas that we use to hate. Self compassion, self care, self love. Much more then the physical.

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