the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.
a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations.
Mindfulness is a powerful thing. Simply being aware of yourself and those around you changes everything on and off your mat. Being aware of how you’re feeling, how your body reacts, your strength and weaknesses, all benefit your practice more than you’d think.
The first definition, ‘the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something’, can be easily applied to yoga and almost any work out. Being aware of yourself is one of the most important aspects. Body awareness is something that is extremely important on your mat. If you aren’t aware of your body injuries can quickly pile up. You shouldn’t have to look in a mirror to know your form is right, you should just be able to feel, to even close your eyes. In another sense, being aware of your body and knowing when to push and when to back off is also another huge way to prevent injury. Many injuries could easily be avoided had people listened to what thier bodies were saying. So what if you have to take an extra child’s pose. No one’s going to kick you out of the yoga studio for listening to your body or for modifying or amplifying a pose. Yoga is not about being perfect. It’s about being in the moment and just listening to your body.
The second definition states, ‘a mental state achieved by focusing one’s awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one’s feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations.’ While essentially the same this adds a little more depth. Being present in the moment, focusing on what’s important in that moment is again another way to prevent injury and to really tune in with your body. While you’re on your mat just be on your mat. You don’t need to be thinking about homework, what happened last night, making your grocery list, just be on your mat. I promise time won’t go any faster if you keep checking the clock. Your instructor is fully aware of the time and I promise they will end the class on time. Sometimes it’s hard to let go of thoughts and that’s ok. You can acknowledge your thoughts without reacting to them
Take time to be mindful of yourself. To be present in the moment. Take time just to breathe. Be in sync with your body and your practice will do more than just improve.