There’s a saying that the hardest thing about a yoga class is getting there. I find this particularly true in December and January. Life is busy, the weather is cold and taking care of ourselves tends to take a back seat. While there are a lot of great reasons to attend yoga classes, there is one, which while true all year, rings particularly well in the dark winter months. We need community.
December is a dark month literally, the days are short, and the lack of sunshine takes its toll on our physical and mental health. January is a dark month figuratively, it’s cold, it’s long and the post-holiday blues tend to run rampant for many of us. Human beings are social beings; we were built that way to survive, however, it’s tempting in our busy lives to want to curl up at home and wait this winter thing out.
However, a Yale Medical Group determined social interaction increases both your mental and physical health. Being part of a community bolsters your immune system, lowers your blood pressure and cholesterol, decreases your risk for depression, and quite possibly decreases your risk for Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular disease and rheumatoid arthritis. It may even help you live longer.
Now for the best part, to be part of the yoga community you just need to show up to yoga class. You can choose how much or how little you want to socialize, because the awesome thing is you get the benefits either way. Fancy coming early for a cup of tea and a chat?…a comfy chair is waiting for you. Are looking for a moment to yourself?…just unroll your mat and get comfortable. Maybe you will feel like that cup of tea after, maybe you won’t, either is completely acceptable, you are still part of the community. Honestly, even without talking, something happens when we practice yoga collectively, a sort of “we are all in this together” vibe, that can follow you throughout your day, throughout your week. Combine that feeling with all of the other smashing perks of yoga and we can rock this winter, together.