It’s that time of year, where we are saying goodbye to the cold weather and welcoming spring with open arms, which also means it is the season for the sniffles. I know I am not the only one who has been attached to a Kleenex box with the additional cough and voice loss.
A sickness like a cough, a cold or the flu can affect your practice, and I am not a doctor by any means, but here are some tips I have been keeping under my belt during this time of year:
1. Listen: Pay close attention to your body, if it is asking you to rest than please do so. You will hit your mat in no time, and take the rest time as a way to reflect and rejuvenate.
2. Patience: Yes, patience is a virtue. If you are hitting your mat, do not force yourself into poses, take modifications if you have to. Your practice may alter from the one you’re used to, but it will be there once you get better.
3. Modify: If you are getting back on your mat from a recent illness, ease back into it. If that means being in Child’s Pose or sitting in Hero’s Pose then be okay with it, your body and your mind need to readjust after taking some time off.
4. Breathing: Stuffy nose anyone? Breath is one of the key components in yoga and one that helps us flow through various asanas and helps us in challenging poses. If it is difficult to breath in and out through your nose, take your time or rest up before coming back to your mat.
5. Warming Up: It is not recommended to dive into deep postures right away. Hip openers are excellent poses to ease you back into your practice – especially if you have been resting and sitting. A great modification for Sun Salutations is several rounds of Cat-Cow poses, if you are just coming back to your practice from some time off.
Remember, you will not be sick forever and your mat will be waiting for your return. Take the time to listen to your body, take rest when needed, drink lots of water and get plenty of rest.