You’re sick? Don’t feel guilty – you can still practice!

The last time I rolled my yoga mat for the purposes of my own yoga practice was a week ago today. This is the longest I have gone in a very long time. I am not sure how I feel about it….actually, I am sure how I feel about it and I don’t like it. This isn’t to say that I haven’t done yoga in a week. I have. I am currently doing a 200 hour teacher training and I did attended sessions this weekend for 12 hours this weekend. Yet, I didn’t practice for myself at all. It began innocently enough. I was on vacation last week and had scads of things to do. I went to class Tuesday morning and practiced at home Wednesday morning (my home practice definitely needs work, but that is a post for another time…). After Wednesday morning I didn’t make time to practice. I figured, no worries, plenty of time over the weekend. Part of the teacher training is going to the morning class before each weekend session. Then I remembered that Saturday I wouldn’t make class due to a prior commitment. No problem. Sunday, I am all set. Then Saturday morning I wake up with no voice. By Saturday evening I am sick. Needless to say Sunday morning I did not go to yoga. Now here I am Wednesday evening having not practiced for a week. Still coughing and only starting to feel a little better. Is being sick a reason not to practice? Do I need to make excuses for not doing my own practice? Is the only way to practice by doing asanas in a 75 minute class?

I was talking to one of the instructors for the teacher training Sunday. He assured me that I shouldn’t practice when I am sick. He said it may be more detrimental than helpful. This was good to hear. But I still feel guilty about it for some reason. Also, doing yoga makes me feel better. When I go a few days without doing it I feel totally off. That being said, the thought of going to a class and moving around has been the last thing my body wants to do this week. I am fully aware that even this writing is off. I was planning on writing about my teacher training or what has been going on at the studio but this is all that is on my mind. Not doing yoga is the only yoga related thing I am thinking about. I have read several books about yoga recently, done sequences and talked about yoga and yoga history nonstop the past few weeks. Yet, the only thing in my brain right now is how long it has been since I went to a yoga class.

I recently had a discussion with other yogis about how many different ways there are to practice yoga. Patanjali talks about the Eightfold Path in the sutras. Asana, which is the physical poses that make up yoga, are only one part of the eight limbs of yoga. The physical practice is not the only way to yoga. Reading, meditating, discussing are all ways to practice yoga too. I do believe that the physical part is a huge one. It is through this part that we are able to achieve other pieces. So I must just be glad that tomorrow is another day. Hopefully I will feel more like myself and get on the mat! I think it misses me;)




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