Today is the first day of summer! And with that comes getting to spend more time outdoors in the sun. I love to practice yoga outside during the summer months. I remember being a kid in school, and whenever spring rolled around and we had a sunny day, we would beg our teachers to let us have class outside. Yet, as adults, we often spend most of our time indoors.
A long time ago, I wrote this post about how spending time outside can have amazing health benefits for people with chronic illness. Being outside in nature can make anyone feel better and increase immune function.
If you’ve been reading my blog, you also know that yoga is chock full of benefits to your health and can help you manage and overcome symptoms of chronic illness . So now that we have the opportunity with good weather, why not practice yoga outside and combine the benefits!
Here are 3 reasons to practice yoga outside
1. Build your resilience
People with higher levels of Resilience get sick less often and heal faster. So how can we build resiliency? Yoga and meditation can help re-wire the brain to deal better with change and thus building resiliency. If you practice yoga outside it can help build your resilience. Bugs will crawl on your mat, bees will fly around you, other people will be sharing your space. Learning to take your yoga practice and focus out into the wild world can help you better adapt to other situations off of the yoga mat.
2. Get perspective
I always find being in nature humbling. Knowing that we are part of a world full of powerful forces of nature helps me put a lot of my small problems in perspective. Suddenly deciding which shoes to buy for my friends' wedding, or how to write a difficult email, don’t seem like such big problems anymore. Putting your current challenges and stresses in perspective can be freeing. One of my favourite authors, Cheryl Strayed, says it best:
“It only had to do with how it felt to be in the wild. With what it was like to walk for miles for no reason other than to witness the accumulation of trees and meadows, mountains and deserts, streams and rocks, rivers and grasses, sunrises and sunsets. The experience was powerful and fundamental. It seemed to me that it had always felt like this to be a human in the wild, and as long as the wild existed it would always feel this way”
3. Connect with nature
Sun salutes have more meaning when you can actually feel the warmth of the sun you are saluting. Practicing outside allows you to enjoy the heightened awareness of your senses that comes with a mindfulness practice. Enjoy the smells and sounds of nature, feel the grass between your toes, savor the sunshine on your skin, and get in your yoga practice while the weather stays warm!
Summer is coming, will you practice yoga outside?
The summer session of my course is starting June 17!, The videos can be done from anywhere, including your backyard.
Not ready to sign up for the course ? Not a problem! You can download some of my classes from audible yoga and listen to the podcasts the next time you’re sitting outside!