Weekly Practice – 3 minute yoga a day

A view from a bridge next to Camp Gorham

I was teaching yoga at Camp Gorham (YMCA) in the first week of October, and it was one cold, rainy weekend. The class starts at 7 am, and we would gather round the fireplace. It was cold in the room, and I quickly re-adjusted  my plan for the class to do some “bigger” poses, just to get us warm.  As we were setting up, I was talking to the women (it was Women Adventure Weekend) about their previous yoga experience, injuries, expectations. They were very different in all aspects, as we all are:  from never done yoga before to  power yoga, Bikram yoga practitioners.

The conversations somehow ended up in home practice – something I struggle with myself. I teach a bit too much at the moment, and attend 2 long classes a week in the yoga studio/school I trained with, so by the end of the week, I pretty much had enough and need to withdraw.  Still, there is that little voice, saying – very truthfully that I am missing out on personal practice.

Back at Camp Gorham, a woman on my right was saying how she needs to do more yoga, how she did it and then she stopped. I asked her what exactly she considers her own practice, and she says right away ” Start with 10 Sun Salutations.” I say silently to myself  ” Ugh. Ugh. Ugh. 10? I do not like even to do one!”  I let it go, and we did  our own modest yoga practice on that cold morning in Adirondacks.

What I really wanted to tell her, and what took me forever to learn, is that there is no prescribed time or format for a personal yoga. What I think about 10 Sun Salutations day in, day out???? Not me, not now. It sounds too much, it sounds too into the numbers – why not 7 or 11, some off number? Or best of all why not “Just One”?

I was running a race in Toronto a few weeks ago, and there was a big expo with many running/health stores selling their cute and expensive stuff. I came across this Canadian clothes line ” Just One More Mile”

It can be ‘Just One Mile” to get us started or “Just One More Mile ” to get us finish whatever we have started. In yoga, I will advocate for ” Just Three Minutes” and am challenging us all to do “Just Three Minutes Yoga ” every day for three days – yes, let’s make it all about numbers!

Here is how we will do it:

1. If you want set a time to 3 minutes or have a watch/clock ready

2. Find the time when it makes sense before you make your morning coffee? Before you read the paper? After you come from work as you are changing to your comfortable house clothes? Before you jump or crawl to bed?

3. What can you do in 3 minutes?

  • Spinal waves(Cat/cow)
  • Child pose
  • Seated twist 3 breaths on each side and then repeat
  • Mountain pose with your eyes closed
  • Bridge pose
  • Viparita Karani – legs up the wall
So this is the  challenge for all of us in the next two weeks  and in the spirit of sports let’s
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