by Eric Carrell, Editor in Chief of True North Athletics
As we embark on a journey, short or long, our senses are heightened and we begin to notice a subtle shift in how we see the others. Yoga allows us to be more receptive: Opening our hearts and minds to new experiences is a rewarding benefit of regular practice.
Personally, I believe that Yoga and Travel fit together like a jigsaw puzzle.
We learn to create our own challenges in our body and minds as we discover new and interesting things about ourselves, through the regular practice of yoga. We learn to reach beyond our limitations, as we strive for, and exceed our expectations. All yogis remember the first time they learned a yoga sequence: some of the poses seemed impossible to achieve, but with time and practice, the rigidity was replaced with fluidness. By taking action, and acknowledging the challenges along the way, yogis learn that doing is half the battle.
Physical stress from prolonged periods of sitting, such as during a long flight or train journey, can be alleviated with some chair yoga and regular movements. Gentle twists and stretches help to keep joints lubricated and muscles engaged, keeping the blood flowing and the body nourished.
Even tummy issues, which are considered a rite of passage when travelling in certain destinations, can be soothed by calm and focused inhalation. Staying healthy while on the road is of utmost importance, and having a sharp mind and fit body is the traveller’s best friend, which yoga can provide.
Yoga increases the awareness of your body and mind, with regular practice – while travel broadens the mind and creates awareness of how others live. The obligations of a normal work-day can often mean there is limited time for fitting in a regular yoga practice. Shallow breathing, tight muscles and less time to nurture your self is a consequence of having little free time. Once the journey has begun and adequate time for practicing yoga has been scheduled, the shallow breathing and tight muscles are replaced with satisfying, nourishing breathing and increased flexibility.
When meeting others on your travels, you come to realize that yoga complements travel and vice versa. Connecting with others is one of the most enjoyable aspects of travel. By making space for yoga in your routine, your spirit is nurtured and you are more sensitive to the resonance of human interaction.
Travel revitalizes your outlook and provides perspective, and yoga realigns you and helps fortify you from the inside out. Long after your return home, as you draw upon memories that travel has gifted you with, your yoga practice continues to sustain, support and challenge you, preparing you for a stronger foundation from which to launch all future travel plans.
I’m Eric, and I’m the Editor in Chief of True North Athletics. I’m also an avid adventurer, digital nomad and traveler. I enjoy all types of sports, a relaxing yoga class and spontaneous weekend trips. I currently live in Brazil where I can be found frequently hiking the rain forest around my city!
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