While growing up, I remember how my physical education teacher used to tell us to touch our toes. Some of us could touch without any difficulty while others couldn’t. I didn’t work out so often after school until I was introduced to yoga. The good thing is that I was determined to fix my body again, whatever the cost or the pains.
Even though my motion ranges increased as I continued with my practice, they came with a price. To manage to achieve full splits was quite an achievement because it was one of my goals. I kept showing off this accomplishment in almost every class I attended from that day. This was until I had a discussion with my instructor. I guess he could see that even though it’s okay to shine in my poses, yoga wasn’t all just about that. He told me that I should focus on wanting to feel better rather than the pursuit of unlimited flexibility alone.
Two months ago I wrote a piece called Readiness is all I needed. The reason I hadn’t exercised for many years was because I hand not found that unifying workout that could not only keep me in shape but also fulfill my inner self. This is the main reason I am writing this piece today, just so I could speak to those who approach yoga with this different mentality, saying that it’s just stretching.
So, we need to understand this amazing form of exercise more instead of continuing to perpetuate myths. As far as I know, yoga isn’t just stretching. And even if someone could try to make me change my mind, then I doubt I could fall for that. In my experience, the moment my muscles slide along during a yoga practice, my body begins to move freely. And when the pain comes, it’s more of a comforting release instead of an intense sensation. Yoga feels safe and isn’t just stretching as many people think.
The only way anyone can understand my point of view is if they have done yoga before. Those who watch people doing yoga from the sidelines will continue to speculate until the day they get to practice YOGA!