When to do Yoga?
The very best time to practice yoga is first thing in the morning before breakfast. Upon waking, empty the bowels, shower if you wish, then commence the day with your regime of yoga practices. The second most conductive time is early evening, around sunset.
But is it of course far better to do something at a time of the day which suits one, rather than to miss out by being too rigid or idealistic. Always remember integral yoga is a balanced recipe which maintains: That to get the best from your yoga practice, you should whenever possible, mix and match the necessary elements of practice which will improve and enhance your spiritual growth and awareness.
Yoga Positions (Asanas) may be practiced at any time of day except within 1-2 hours of having eaten. You can do postures when the body feels stiff, tense, tired or hyped-up. Be aware not to do too many over-stimulating postures just before bedtime. Asanas are best practiced first in your yoga routine, followed by breathing (Pranayama) and then meditation.
Pranayama may be practiced at any time of day except within 1-2 hours after meals. It may be done when tense or tired or when space does not allow room for postures. Pranayama is best practiced straight after asanas without breaking the flow of awareness. Pranayama is a necessary pre-requisite for successful meditation.
Meditation may be done at any time of day when you feel both awake and relaxed. For best results don’t do meditation within 1-2 hours of eating, when sleepy, nor when mentally “hyped-up”.
Yoga Nidra can be done at any time of day, even directly after meals so long as you do not fall asleep in the practice. Don’t do Yoga Nidra when you feel tired or sleepy. More will be gained when you are both awake and relaxed.
Place of Practice It is best is to have fresh air in a quiet and clean place that suits the concentration and awareness yoga will create. Do not practice yoga in direct sunlight or after sun-bathing. Outdoors is OK but avoid cold wind and insects.
Awareness Throughout a yoga practices, try to keep your awareness on what you are doing. Don’t be concerned with others in the class or outside the room.
Proceed slowly and carefully. Follow the instructions exactly.
Never force or strain. Relax briefly between each practice. Remember the golden rule: “If it’s uncomfortable – DON’T”
Breathing Always breathe through the nose both in and out, unless specified otherwise. ( eg. breathing tghrough nose only, smoothly, and deep can cure the High blood pressure !)
If you do have trouble breathing through your nose, practice (Nasal Cleansing) or visit a doctor for medical inspection.
Restrictions & Precautions There are no age limits either young or old for the practice of yoga. The seniors will have great health benefits from practice of yoga, increasing their life span, and quality of life.
However the application of the techniques will vary according to the abilities of the practitioner.
Keep in mind the following.
Never practice any yoga techniques under the influence of alcohol or mind altering drugs.
Those with disabilities, severe, acute or chronic medical conditions should consult both with their medical practitioner and their yoga teacher to assess any dangers or difficulties which may arise. Some body postures that are OK for others, can be harmfull for those with chronic deseases.
There are no hard and fast dietary rules necessary to begin the practice of yoga. One does not have to give up smoking, become vegetarian, or be a purist to learn yoga.
Wear loose comfortable yoga clothing so there there is no restriction around the limbs.
Remove spectacles, watches or any cumbersome jewelry or ornaments and keep beside you in a yoga pouch.