A mat of your very own

Would you run in somebody else’s running shoes? How about swimming in their swimming cap?

With 2015 fast approaching, it’s a good time to think about the commitments we want to make for the year ahead. Investing in some kit – be it for the gym, for walking, for golfing or whatever – can help us to feel committed and ensure we carry through and achieve the goals we are setting ourselves.

I’m often asked: Do I need to buy my own mat or can I borrow one?” Whilst I’m always happy to lend newbies a mat so they can try the class out, I always recommend buying your own mat as soon as possible. Here’s why:

1.    Find the right mat for you. There is a huge variety of mats to suit different styles of yoga, body types and even personalities! I can give advice on how to choose the best one for you.

2.    Become habitual. Using the same mat weekly, and in time, daily, can help to create a short-cut to being “in the yoga zone”.  You see your mat, you become aware of your breath, and so on. Getting on your mat and using your own equipment builds positive “self-care” associations in your consciousness.

3.    Create a daily practice. Many people “do” yoga, just like they “do” a sport. Yoga isn’t a sport – it’s a daily practice that can become a lifelong commitment, and it’s a good idea to keep practicing outside of your weekly class.

4.    Make your yoga space your own. Having your own mat – and equipment such as spiky ball, foam ball and dome – allows you the space to do something for you. It’s your body, your effort, your sweat – it’s personal! Your own mat is hygienic – it’s a safe and sacred space just for you.

5.    Become self-aware. My clients often ask me – for how long should I do my yoga each day, and how often should I use my spiky ball to release my knotty shoulders? Whilst I’m always happy to advise, it’s important for each client to cultivate self-awareness so that they intuitively “know” what their body needs. What makes your shoulders tight? Who upsets you? How do you sit and work? Having your own kit enables you to practice, play, learn, and explore what works for you, outside of class.

We need the right tools to develop a yoga practice, as well as the right attitude and the openness to go outside our comfort zones. Being self-aware gives us the choice to change how we are living. Investing in the tools to support a daily practice, as well as going to classes, is an investment in our own wellbeing – it give us the unconscious message that “we’re worth it”.

Classes start again in January 2015 – do get in touch if you’d like to join.  I can lend you a mat – but I’d recommend one of my great value Body Mind Unwind kits to get the New Year off to a great start. Invest in yourself and start to live more mindfully in 2015. Your body will thank you!

Wishing you health and happiness.

Susannah x

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