4 Cleansing Yoga Practices to Start 2019 Off Right
A new year often brings an overwhelming amount of content on reflection and goal-setting. Articles and social media posts tend to place a focus on evaluating what went wrong in the previous year. Or creating lists of everything you want to accomplish in the next.
However, we’d like to suggest that instead of starting with regret, a feeling of failure, or a long to-do list, focus on clearing your mind and refreshing your body with a new year yoga practice or two!
Yoga practices offer a structured way to center your thoughts and often provide a feeling of control. This can help to bring clarity and empowerment.
A new year often brings an overwhelming amount of content on reflection and goal-setting.
These practices can be an everyday ritual as simple as saying “OM” at the beginning of your yoga practice or “namaste” at the end. They can be seasonal routines like equinox flows, designed to help embrace the changes that come with new seasons.
A good yoga practice helps us access our intentions and look deeper into our thoughts and emotions in a positive way. By separating us from mundane activities and thoughts of day-to-day life, yoga practices create moments of time to focus on ourselves, create peace, and manifest dreams!
Understanding what each yoga practice means and how it can help is the first step to deciding if it’s something you should include in your life.
Here Are 4 New Year Yoga Practices to Cleanse the Past and Clear Your Mind for 2019:
These are some of our favorite new year yoga practices. They symbolize a cleanse of the past and encourage you to approach the future with enthusiasm and purpose.
1. 108 Sun Salutations
A Sun Salutation is a specific flow of movements synced with breath typically practiced in Vinyasa Yoga classes. Often strung together, Sun Salutations signify new beginnings and a cleansing of the past.
Continuous movement often brings renewed energy, a feeling of empowerment, and a clear mind. Working through the emotions that come with physical effort can be really cathartic. So, needless to say, Sun Salutations are a perfect new year yoga practice!
Sun Salutations signify new beginnings and a cleansing of the past.
To get your body moving and build on the positive energy of the new year, aim to complete 108 Sun Salutations. Focus on your breath and intentions, and imagine your life as though you’ve already reached your goals.
If you’re unable to complete 108, that’s okay! The goal is to push through negative emotions that pop up with the physical effort and focus on what’s in your heart in preparation for the upcoming year.
Why 108? Learn more about the number’s significance! The Meaning of 108 Sun Salutations + What Practicing Them Will Teach You
Take this FREE Sun Salutation flow class
2. Breath of Fire
Breath of Fire is a form of controlled breathing that involves forceful inhales and exhales that build heat in the body.
It’s great to try this at the beginning of the year because it’s a powerful way to bring clean air into your lungs. This symbolizes a fresh start, and can help you send negative energy packing!
It stimulates the nervous and respiratory systems as well as the Second and Third Chakras. And, thus, offers you a clear mindset focused on growth and optimism.
Try practicing Breath of Fire for one minute every day for one week as part of your new year yoga practice. (It’s even better when paired with a meditation session!)
3. Yoga Nidra
Yoga Nidra is a guided meditation often referred to as “yogic sleep.” It can have a powerful impact on your state of mind because of its strong focus on the release of concerns and worries from the conscious mind.
The practice of Yoga Nidra tells the brain the importance of relaxation by clearing the mind. It provides a wonderful dose of peace as you head into this season focused on reflection and action.
Try this 45-minute guided Yoga Nidra practice to cleanse the past and begin the new year feeling refreshed.
4. Alternate Nostril Breathing
Often touted as a stress-relief technique, Alternate Nostril Breathing is a form of focused, controlled breathwork.
It brings extra oxygen to the brain, similar to Breath of Fire. But, because you’re literally alternating breathing through each nostril (while covering the other), this technique encourages balance between your mental, physical, and emotional states.
With this balance comes a decrease in stress and a stronger connection between your mind and body. Try it as for as long as you need to feel refreshed and calm about the upcoming year. Add a few minutes of normal breathing at the end.
A New Year Yoga Practice Is Adjustable to Your Needs!
Each of these new year yoga practices are wonderful to complete at the beginning of the year or any time you feel you need to cleanse the past or renew your focus on what’s important.
The beauty of a yoga practice is that you can do it once a year, once a week, every day, or at whatever interval suits you! These practices are also accessible essentially anywhere, anytime, making them perfect for even the busiest person.
You’ll know your chosen yoga practice is serving you if you feel a sense of lightness, fulfillment, or clarity upon completion. Cheers to a clear mind and positive outlook in the new year!
What’s your favorite new year yoga practice? Comment below and share with us!
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