If you want to become an advanced yogi, here are 9 tips that can help you improve your skills

There’s a vast difference between dabbling in yoga and striving to become an advanced yogi.

This difference is all about dedication.

When you’re just dabbling, you might be content with a few sun salutations here and there.

But if you’re serious about going to the next level, you need to commit to a deeper practice.

Becoming an advanced yogi means immersing yourself in the discipline, seeking a deeper connection between mind, body, and spirit.

And trust me, there are certain tips that can make this journey easier and more rewarding.

Here are nine tips that can help you evolve from a casual practitioner to a dedicated yogi.

1) Embrace consistency

There’s a huge difference between occasional yoga practice and a sustained, consistent routine.

For serious yogis, yoga isn’t just an activity – it’s a way of life.

You see, yoga isn’t just about perfecting asanas (postures).

It’s also about cultivating mindfulness, finding inner peace, and creating harmony between your body and mind.

And these things take time and regular practice.

Consistency is key in any discipline, but especially so in yoga.

Even if it’s just 10 minutes a day, make sure you’re dedicating some time to your practice every day.

It might seem like a small thing, but trust me – over time, the cumulative effects of consistent practice can lead to significant improvements in your yoga skills.

And that’s what being an advanced yogi is all about.

Not just mastering complex postures, but integrating yoga into your daily life and making it part of who you are.

2) Prioritize yoga’s philosophy over postures

Many beginners, and even those fairly advanced in their practice, make the mistake of focusing solely on the physical aspect of yoga – the asanas.

I was no different when I first started my yoga journey.

I was all about perfecting those complex postures and showing off my flexibility.

But yoga isn’t just a physical exercise.

It was when I delved deeper into the philosophy behind yoga that I truly began to understand what it meant to be a yogi.

Yoga is about finding balance, practicing mindfulness, fostering self-awareness, and promoting self-love.

It’s about accepting your body as it is and not comparing yourself to others. It’s about being present in the moment.

I remember struggling with a particularly difficult pose one day, and my instructor told me, “Yoga is not about touching your toes, it’s about what you learn on the way down.”

And that changed everything for me.

So if you want to become an advanced yogi, don’t just focus on your physical practice.

Learn about the philosophy behind it and try to incorporate those principles into your daily life.

3) Practice Pranayama and meditation

While yoga asanas are essential, they’re just one part of the yoga trifecta.

The other two vital components are Pranayama (breath control) and meditation.

Pranayama is a set of breathing exercises in yoga that help control the prana or life energy.

Regular practice of Pranayama can have profound effects on your physical and mental health.

Meditation, on the other hand, helps cultivate mindfulness and mental clarity.

By integrating meditation into your practice, you’ll develop a deeper understanding of your body, your breath, and your thoughts.

And here’s something to consider: the literal translation of the word ‘yoga’ from Sanskrit is ‘union’.

It signifies the union of mind, body, and spirit.

So to truly master yoga, it’s crucial to embrace all its components – not just the physical postures.

4) Find a Mentor

While self-practice is crucial, having a mentor who can guide you along your yoga journey can be incredibly beneficial.

A mentor can correct your alignment, help you understand the nuances of each pose, and guide you through the more complex asanas.

Moreover, they can provide valuable insights into the philosophy behind yoga and help you integrate it into your daily life.

Yoga is not just a physical practice but a mental and spiritual journey as well.

Having someone experienced to guide you can make this journey smoother and more meaningful.

5) Listen to your body

As you deepen your yoga practice, it’s crucial to learn to listen to your body.

Yoga is all about harmony and balance, and pushing yourself too hard can lead to injury and burnout.

Instead of forcing your body into poses it’s not ready for, learn to respect its limits and work with it, not against it.

Start by paying attention to how your body feels during and after each session.

Are there certain poses where you feel strain or discomfort?

Are there times when you feel energized, or times when you feel drained?

By tuning into these signals, you can adjust your practice to suit your body’s needs.

And over time, as your flexibility and strength improve, you’ll find that poses that once seemed impossible are now within your reach.

6) Cultivate a sense of compassion

At its core, yoga is about unity and compassion – for yourself, for others, and for the world around you.

As you deepen your practice, it’s important to cultivate a sense of compassion.

This isn’t always easy, especially in our fast-paced world where we’re often encouraged to compete rather than connect.

But remember, yoga isn’t a competition.

It’s not about being better than someone else, or even being better than you were yesterday.

It’s about being present in the moment, accepting yourself as you are, and extending that acceptance to others.

So as you work on your physical practice, also work on your heart.

Practice compassion towards yourself when a pose doesn’t go as planned.

Extend that compassion to your fellow yogis, recognizing that everyone is on their own unique journey.

And most importantly, carry that compassion with you off the mat.

Because ultimately, becoming an advanced yogi isn’t just about improving your skills – it’s about becoming a more compassionate and connected human being.

7) Embrace the idea of impermanence

One of the most profound lessons I’ve learned through my yoga journey is the concept of impermanence.

There was a time when I was attached to my ability to perform certain poses.

I would beat myself up if I couldn’t achieve them one day, even if I had done them perfectly the day before.

It was a constant battle with myself, and it took a toll on both my practice and my peace of mind.

Then, one day, my yoga teacher shared a nugget of wisdom that changed my perspective.

She said, “The only constant in life is change. Your body changes, your mind changes, your circumstances change. Learn to embrace that change instead of fighting it.”

That was a game-changer for me.

I learned to let go of my attachment to certain poses and outcomes.

Instead, I started focusing on how I felt during the practice.

Some days were good, some days were not so good – and that was okay.

So learn to embrace the idea of impermanence.

Understand that your practice will ebb and flow, just like life itself.

8) Keep learning and exploring

The beauty of yoga is that there’s always something new to learn, no matter how advanced you become.

There are hundreds of asanas, various styles of yoga, and countless techniques for meditation and breath work.

Plus, the philosophy behind yoga is vast and profound, offering endless opportunities for exploration and understanding.

So never stop learning.

Attend workshops, read books, watch online tutorials.

Experiment with different styles of yoga and find the ones that resonate with you.

Delve into the philosophy and history of yoga to deepen your understanding.

Becoming an advanced yogi isn’t about reaching a final destination.

It’s about continuing to learn, grow, and evolve throughout your journey.

9) Enjoy the journey

At the end of the day, the most important part of becoming an advanced yogi isn’t about mastering the most difficult poses or meditating for hours on end. It’s about enjoying the journey.

Yoga is a lifelong practice, and it’s meant to bring joy, peace, and balance into your life.

So don’t get so caught up in the destination that you forget to enjoy the journey.

Celebrate your progress, no matter how small.

Savor the moments of peace and clarity that come with a good session.

Cherish the sense of connection you feel with yourself and with others.

Because ultimately, becoming an advanced yogi isn’t just about improving your skills – it’s about enriching your life.

So take a deep breath, roll out your mat, and enjoy the journey. That’s what yoga is all about.

It’s an inner journey

The path to becoming an advanced yogi is a profound journey that transcends the physical realm, delving deep into the mind and spirit.

As you embark on this journey, remember that it’s not about perfecting asanas or achieving physical prowess.

It’s about igniting that inner flame and allowing it to guide you towards self-discovery and self-realization.

Whether it’s exploring new asanas, delving into Pranayama and meditation, or embracing the philosophy of yoga in your daily life, every step you take on this path is an opportunity for growth and transformation.

So, as you roll out your mat each day and commit to your practice, remember – you are not just becoming an advanced yogi.

You are embarking on a transformative journey that has the power to illuminate your life from within.

Remember, the essence of being a yogi lies not in the mastery of postures but in how you live and breathe yoga in your everyday life.

So focus less on the destination and more on the journey – because that’s where the true magic of yoga lies.

Clifton Kopp

Clifton Kopp

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