With the weather getting warmer, now is a great time to spring clean your mind and body, and to start creating or re-establishing positive habits. This article will give you some ideas to kick-start a new, healthy you!
On a physical level, we are continually exposed to toxins through air pollution, chemicals in our food and the stressful lives we live. Although our bodies are well equipped to deal with a certain level of toxins, sometimes the accumulation is too much and our bodies suffer with sinus issues, low energy, skin breakouts or worse. As always, yoga has the answer!
The heat generated in an asana practice is a powerful way to purify the body. In addition, there are more specific yoga techniques and purification practices described in the Yoga Upanishads, called Shatkarma. You can read about Shatkarma in more modern yogic texts such as Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha.
You may want to consider undertaking a detox or juice fast to cleanse your liver and kidneys. A simple and effective step is to drink a cup of hot water with fresh lemon juice before your morning practice. This alkalises and hydrates the body, while flushing out the liver and kidneys.
Perhaps more importantly, yoga helps to cultivate a shift in attitude, which in the long term can help to prevent the build up of toxins. Mysore-style is a very mindful practice which focuses your attention on your movement and breath, meaning that you are more likely to notice physical and emotional patterns or knots. Pranayama and meditation also play an important role. Off the mat, our yoga practice encourages us to take a more mindful approach to life in general, which eventually will start to pervade your whole life – from the way you relate to other people, to the food you eat and the beauty and cleaning products you use.
So this month, embrace not only the warmer weather but the possibilities that your yoga practice can offer you on both a physical and emotional level.