As some of you know, my husband & I have been renovating & upgrading our house in Punta Gorda, Florida over the past 8 months - we are still not quite finished, but it is really coming along nicely. One important space that I needed to create was a practice space of my "Om"... this space was easily carved out for me as we have no need for 2 extra bedrooms & our office is a midcentury modern desk set up in living room.
My space is serene & incredibly inviting on these HOT & HUMID Florida days when outdoor yoga (which I typically prefer) is almost unbearable!
This post is intended to help describe the best way create the yoga space your "Om" & how that space actualizes a more consistent home practice.
Here are some basics for creating the space:
1. Find Your "Om"~
Whether you live in a house, apartment or condo, you can use any open space for your personal yoga studio. Ideally it is a quiet & peaceful place (yes, kids, roomates &/or pets can be distracting, but the trade for an accessible & free space to practice is invaluable). Make it a point to always practice yoga in the same spot(s) in your home. You will start to associate this spot or spots with yoga and will automatically get into the right state of mind each time you roll out your yoga mat.
-Bedroom: the bedroom is place of solitude. If you have floor space to spare, yoga in the bedroom can be quite enjoyable as it is the area of the house that you naturally are calm, relaxed & dream.
-Guest Bedroom, Formal Living Room, Basement: often (like in my house) we have a room in the house that is under utilized, like a 3rd or 4th bedroom, additional Living Room or finished Basement area. Consider repurposing & using tone of these spaces for your yoga sanctuary.
-Backyard, Lanai, Pool Deck: my all-time favorite place to do yoga is IN nature! To breathe in the fresh air, feel the sun shining & the breeze against your skin. Create a yoga space under a large tree or near flowers & vegetation to become more connected to Mother Nature.
-Make Room: No room to spare?! Make room! You can always move a table or slide a couch to the side. Right now, there's a small space in your house just waiting to become your "Om Sweet Om". Simply clear a small space that is at least six feet by six feet or longer, depending on your height & 4 feet wide. It is vital that you move surrounding furniture out of reach so you have ample room to accommodate all desired postures.
2. Create Your Environment~
It is important to remove all clutter & distractions from your chosen space. No furniture, knick-knacks, papers, or pet toys! If you're converting a small space only to change it back after your session, grab a basket or box to conveniently & quickly store all of the original items. Take your time to develop this personal sanctuary; find items that you truly love & add them to your space until it feels complete.
-Yoga Mat: you need one, nuff said.
-Little Altars: an altar is a central place where you can meditate & reconnect. An altar can be anywhere - book shelf, nightstand, room corner, etc. - and can include anything that helps promote spirituality (some items could include flowers, candles, crystals, pictures, vision boards &/or statues).
-Props & Meditation Items: what type of yoga do you intend to practice?! Props (like blocks, straps, blankets & cushions/pillows or bolsters) are great for home practice use & can really help a practice at home or in the studio go deeper.
-Ambiance: light level & temperature are key to a comfortable space; use windows in your space to let the fresh air in or open window blinds to increase the natural light in the space. Use a light dimmer or candles to create mood & be sure to have good air flow (use AC, heat or fans if necessary) to maintain enjoyable temperatures in your space. Also included here is music, use relaxing or meditative sounds & music to expand your personal practice.
-Aroma: burn sage, palo santo, incense or use a diffuser to set the mood. You can also create a custom scent/spray (or purchase one from botanica belize ;) that you specifically use for yoga. Each time you use it you will associate the scent to your yoga & relaxation.
And a few more tips!
-Sometimes it is helpful to keep your mat OUT in your space. It is a helpful reminder that you have a very important date later!
-Personalize & tailor your yoga routine to fit your own needs. Choose the poses that help you the most; you could decide to improve a different pose each time you practice, use a video/dvd or set up a routine that you follow. Yoga is yours - it’s enough to have you & your yoga mat & a few quiet minutes with which to slow down, breathe, relax & just feel your body in a few juicy stretches.
-Remember that anything can be YOUR YOGA. You can turn daily & otherwise seemingly mundane tasks into mindful & meditative practices.
Be well. Be wild. Do your practice!
Hope to see you all soon xoxoJo