My dad introduced me to yoga at a young age. He actually used to teach yoga to me and my friends when we were in junior high school. He was interested in yoga back when it wasn’t cool. (Bear with me – I promise this relates to law firm marketing.)
I’ve been a serious yoga practitioner for about six years now. Like most yogis, I was drawn to serious practice for superficial reasons; I wanted to look strong and flexible and to do impressive poses.
I thought I was fit at the time, so I started attending a lot of vigorous, flowy yoga classes. I grew stronger and developed more flexibility. I even managed to put myself into those impressive-looking poses, which I thought was pretty cool. Then two things happened.
I hit a plateau. I couldn’t seem to progress any further in my practice; and I was injuring myself. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out what I was doing wrong!
A bit frustrated, I started trying other styles of yoga. Then I was introduced to Ashtanga.
I had never encountered a style of yoga quite like Ashtanga. Unlike what is taught in many yoga classes, Ashtanga has a clearly defined philosophy about how to treat yourself and others. The physical practice is only part of a broader spiritual practice.
When you learn a yoga pose, you learn how to do it without props or variations so that you do it properly from the start. When you’ve mastered one pose, then you may attempt the next.
Ashtanga is also meant to be practiced six mornings a week. The belief is that consistent practice is the key to growth.
So, I started doing Ashtanga. It made me feel weak and rigid all over again, but I was building a solid physical foundation.
Over time, I grew even stronger and developed more flexibility. There were no more injuries. Every so often I realized I was doing something I couldn’t do the week before.
I’m not saying that Ashtanga is the best style of yoga and I’ll never do anything else – I still love my local vinyassa yoga studio. However, I think that we can draw certain lessons from this experience and apply them to law firm marketing…