Take a peek at the most fantastic choices available for your at-home-yoga life on a budget and make sure your day has been fully realised
There was a time I didn’t do anything after work; just sat there, waiting for something. Not sure what. Cooking, yes. Watching the news. Or whatever. Something to end the day without thinking until it was time to go to bed and then do it all over again.
Finally I decided to stop doing nothing and make use of the floor at my feet by throwing a mat on it. Soon I was stretching the house down, moving to the rhythm of YouTube and spreading those legs far and almost wide. Five years later and here I am, an almost healthy thirty-one year old with the body and flexibility of someone far more virile (a thirty-year old, perhaps).
And although it wasn’t easy, it was exactly difficult either.
While I started with Pilates classes online and had dabbled with yoga for a ten-day retreat in Cambodia, it wasn’t until I came across Boho Beautiful, with their yoga-centred classes, that I learned to appreciate the value of what some people refer to as a ‘daily practice’.
Boho Beautiful are a couple from Canada – Juliana and Mark – who you’d forgive yourself for thinking you’ve seen before, being all perfectly flexible at the front of the yoga class and decided they are too perfect for you, thanks. But please, remind yourself (as I had to) to look beyond aesthetics and take people for who they are: Dedicated, conscious, worldly, loving, caring, and very flexible human beings making a living for themselves from travel and yoga while you (I) sit there thinking about when to start my life. Now is the time, not tomorrow. Now.
Let’s have a look at the most fantastic fünf to get your at-home-yoga life started.
Eins: Yoga Workout Blast ♥ Tools For A New You| DECISION. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zaSw9tj6to . Good for: Mental strength
While this will certainly not be the easiest for beginners to get their legs around, it is a perfect place to start mentally. One of the most inspiring parts of Boho Beautiful that makes them more interesting than most is their opening soliloquy. While many yogis can churn out a platitude on self-acceptance at the roll of a mat, Juliana and Mark talk more pragmatically about how to improve your life. Here they explore the value of ‘decision’ and how to apply your metal strength to everyday life. The class itself requires a little more stamina and not much lying down – you can do that later when you deserve it (and when you will be able to appreciate it).
Zwei: Intermediate Yoga ♥ Stress Release Flow| Playa Barrigona. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29noBUQoZZI . Good for: An energising flow
Once you discover the power in your core from all the upward-facing lunges, it could be time to dabble with an intermediate video. Although doing so too quickly may knock your confidence, it will also push you beyond complacency and what you thought your body was capable of. In a matter on months (or sooner if you’re looser) you could be head to knee with an arm behind your back and another arm stemming from a different angle somehow connecting and making you gaze at a little black spot you’d never noticed on the ceiling. All this while your tempeh-topped veggies roast themselves in the oven. What could be simpler?
Drei: Yoga Workout Tone & Burn ♥Tools For A New You | PATIENCE https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mw-UUedHpxk . Good for: Hips and core
If your balance and hip flexibility are ready to be put to the test, this will be the video for you. There are plenty of stretches to awaken your core with planks that swiftly turn into single-legged downward dogs followed up with knee to elbow motions that will surely test your muscle stamina. As the video is entitled ‘patience’, the words and sentiments shared at the beginning of the video help to push you through as your hips are sinking to the mat and the pushback becomes almost too much. “You are exactly where you need to be.” Perfect, I think, as I straddle my mat as low as I can before my body tells me no and I decide that today, this is where I will be.
Vier: Pilates 15 Min Full Body Burn ♥Tools For A New You | FOCUS. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZxzFaSLj_Y . Good for: A powerfully quick ab workout
Back when I thought I would like to look like a petite toned lady, this was the video I first came across by Boho Beautiful. It is, of course, much more than a video on sculpting abs (I have done videos like that on YouTube which are very much only this: Completely depthless) although it will give you a quick wake up call in the adnominal region. But as ever the message which welcomes you to the Pilates-inspired routine is far more powerful than your abs and will stay with you long after you vacate your mat: You don’t just become something, you be it and make it become you who are. Whoa.
Funf: Yin Yoga For Flexibility ♥Tight Hips & Hamstrings | Sacred Valley. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DYQHo7OboEM . Good for: Learning how to breathe
Hello, Sunday morning! Let’s get those hips helped and psoas stretched by this yin yoga routine. Something of a more subdued class compared to the flows or high-reaching poses, yin yoga, as I have come to realise, demands a lot of mental strength and breathing to push you through. The vicissitudes of the poses can pass quickly or not so quickly as you attempt to remain in place for two minutes apiece. Stay where are though, as the reward is a looser hip, strength in your system, and the achievement of mind over torture. “Just focus on the breath” has never been more apt.