Before you walk into a yoga class pause and take a deep inhale and with awareness exhale slowly and mindfully. Then enter the room and begin to unroll your mat and seat yourself in quietness. Either observe your breathe or start with gentle stretches. Begin to connect or bring awareness to your body, mind and breath are doing.
Below are some points to observe during your own yoga practice.
Setting an intention at the beginning of your practice is key. The intentions are yours alone to make so try to keep them positive and personal. These do become your partner during your entire practice. These intentions will be gentle reminders of why you are on the mat
During your practice try to be present in a given asana. Looking ahead or wanting to reach the next level of the same posture will prevent you from enjoying and understanding the pose you are in. The sensations that arise with each pose are wonderful hints to how your body is feeling. With each pose brings new answers or discoveries of the self.
Moving from one asana to another or transitioning within a particular asana is important. It is during these moments where injuries can happen. Allow your breath to lead or guide you into the next posture. Your breath will be your guidance to how your body is feeling or doing. Staying connected with it will stimulate all areas of the self. Observe it and breathe fully and deeply.
During your practice if you begin to feel frustrated, tired or your breathing has become too fast then slow down. Take balasana or child's pose and pause. Taking that moment to re connect with the self is important. You will be doing your self and body a great service.
Remember that yoga is for everyone. No two bodies, mind or spirit are alike. Each one is where they should be in their journey. Poses will vary according to strength, flexibility or build of the body. Stay aware with your own body, mind and breath. Listen and connect to what your own body is telling you.
Yoga on the mat brings calmness within the nervous systems and balance within the self. When we consciously create these nuances or sensations within our practice we also seek it off the mat. Allow your practice to flow into your day to to day life. Practice yoga off the mat.