5 Things You Can Do to Improve Your Yoga Practice for More Patience, Focus and Confidence

Ashton August
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Picture it: you’re in downward facing dog, but instead of concentrating on touching your heels to the mat, you’re balancing your checkbook or composing next week’s to-do list.

We’ve all been there during a yoga class! And while thoughts and distractions are bound to occur on the mat, there are simple ways to avoid them. Whether you’re a seasoned yogi or trying it out for the first time, these simple guidelines will show you how to get better at yoga for a more enriching, purposeful practice!
 
 

Learn How to Get Better at Yoga for a More Impactful Practice with These 5 Tips:

 

1. Give Yourself Time

Yoga is a practice of calming the mind and body. Rushing onto your mat and into your practice contradicts the calm that yoga stands for. Leave your stress at the door and give yourself a few minutes before class begins to simply relax.

Bring your awareness away from your to-do list and onto your mat for some one-on-one time with Y-O-U! Allotting a few minutes before each yoga class will guarantee a more peaceful, fulfilling yoga practice.
 

2. Focus On Your Breath

The Sanskrit root for yoga means “union” or “to yoke.” Yoga is the conscious practice of linking breath to movement. When your mind starts to wander, gently bring it back to your yoga practice by focusing on your breath.
 

 
 
Allow every inhale to help center you within your pose. Allow every exhale to lead you a little bit deeper into the stretch. Staying with your breath will silence your mind and strengthen your yoga practice.
 

3. Find your Drishti

Drishti is the practice of steadying your gaze. Where your eyes go, your attention follows. When your gaze begins to wander, so do your thoughts.

Try these 5 Yogic Techniques to Create a Truly Calm Mind

When you can calm the mind, you become fully present. Now you are able to mindfully direct your focus, with a gaze that is both present and controlled during your yoga practice.
 

4. Stay Hydrated

As with any physical exertion, it is important to keep your body hydrated. In yoga, and especially for all you hot yogis out there, you’ll need 1-1.5 liters of water for an hour-long practice.
 

 
 
As your body sweats, the blood thickens and your heart has to pump faster. While this chain reaction increases immune and metabolic function, it also puts a strain on the body. If your body isn’t remaining properly hydrated, your performance will suffer.
 

 5. Don’t Judge Yourself

When it comes to self-confidence, we can often be our own worst enemies. Just as our bodies are constantly changing, so does our practice from one day to the next. One leg might be more flexible today than it was in last week’s yoga class, or we might find tension in a forward fold that wasn’t there before.

Check out these 20 Particularly Relevant Yoga Sutras Translated and Explained

The most important aspect of our yoga practice is our attitude. Arriving with an open mind and a willingness to accept your body as it is in this moment will banish all your negative self-chatter.
 
Is there anything you would add to this list? Use the comment section below and tell us some of the things you do to get the most out of your yoga practice. 

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Ashton August

Ashton is a writer, yoga instructor and Editorial Director here at YogiApproved.com. If she's not bustin' out articles or producing YogiApproved videos, you can find her teaching Buti Yoga, hugging her puppies, or traveling the world with her beau. Follow her on social @ashtonaugustyoga

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