STAY HY ON THE HOLIDAYS
By: Katie Nassiff
Stay HY on the Holidays
The holidays are here and energy is high, spirits are bright, and to-do lists are extra long. Between end of year deadlines, coordinating travel plans, and squeezing in a festive party or two, it can be hard to fit yoga into your day - especially on those days full of family and food when you might need it the most. Luckily, Highland Yoga can help you stay on track with your practice this season either at home or at Grandma’s house. We’ve got the tools to keep you off the naughty list - between our holiday schedule, a new location at Madison Yards, and HY Online, you can give yourself a little love this season at home or at the studio.
Here are some tips for keeping up with your practice during the holiday season:
1. Make a commitment
We tend to think of New Years as a time to set a resolution - but why wait until January 1st to start a good habit? As the days get shorter and there’s less daylight to enjoy outside, December is the perfect time to commit (or recommit) to a daily practice - and nothing beats a warm studio when the temperatures are dropping!
If you’re a new student, you can join Highland Yoga for 30 days of unlimited yoga for $30 - that’s just $1/day if you challenge yourself to a daily commitment.
If you’re a vinyasa veteran, now might be the perfect time to shake things up. Set a goal - maybe you’re working on inversions, arm balances, or splits - set an intention for the month and see if you can challenge yourself to commit to a practice focused on your new goal.
2. Find an accountability buddy
Staying in town for the holidays? Find a buddy to help get you through the door. When the days are shorter, the air is cooler, and the parties are sparklier, it can be tempting to skip a session. Make it a plan to meet up at the studio and notice how much easier it is to fit in a class. Plus, in the midst of juggling invites, you get to cross one rendez-vous off the list by turning it into a yoga date!
3. Try out a new time
Do you normally practice after work or in the evening? With holiday shopping, last-minute errands, and holiday parties for what feels like everyone you know, making it into the studio after 5:00pm might feel out of reach. Consider switching up your schedule and giving yourself a chance to breathe in the morning before the holiday hustle begins.
Starting your day off with yoga practice means you get to make time for yourself, check one thing off your to-do list, and take a little extra joy with you into your day. You may not be a morning person - and that’s okay. You’ll notice that your practice feels different earlier in the day, but you’ll still reap so many benefits from spending an hour with yourself - and you’ll feel better later knowing that you knocked it out.
4. Practice anywhere
Going out of town for the holidays? Or only ever have time to practice at midnight while you’re preparing your favorite recipes and wrapping gifts? The great news is that yoga can be accessed anywhere. All it takes is you, your body, and your breath.
Wherever you are, mat or no mat, music or no music, sitting or standing, you can practice yoga. It starts with tuning into your breath, checking in with your body. From there, you can add movement, you can change up your breathing technique, you can simply sit and observe. All of these tools are methods for you to feel more connected - which is one of the primary goals of yoga. It doesn’t have to be a full hour of movement - it can be 5 minutes in the airport before your flight. Just allowing yourself to take up space, breathe, and maybe move in a way that feels good for your body will help you peel back a layer of holiday stress and allow you to connect deeper to yourself and your loved ones.
If you’re still craving Highland Yoga, and the studio isn’t accessible to you, there’s even more good news - you can practice wherever you are with HY Online! With the online platform, you can flow with your favorite teachers with the luxury of being able to start and stop at any time. Plus, the sessions range from 5 - 90 minutes, so you really can fit in a full practice while the oven preheats or during that long layover.
Whether you’re working on your own home practice or following along online, you already have the tools to fit yoga into your life anywhere you go.
5. Take your practice off the mat
Finally, use the holiday season as an opportunity to share and show love and gratitude to the people in your community. What you practice on your mat can be taken off the mat, into your life and relationships. There are so many beautiful connections created through the practice of yoga, both within the community, and ourselves. We can give ourselves the opportunity to be more present, more compassionate, understanding, and honest. We make space for ourselves to feel, and to listen for the pause in between action and response. Wherever you are during the holiday season, and whatever feelings surface, you can incorporate what you have practiced in the studio to be present and enjoy an authentic experience, which will make your interactions with yourself, your family, friends, and even strangers that much more meaningful.
Your practice can be one of the first things to suffer when your schedule is booked, but it doesn’t have to be. You can challenge yourself to commit to your practice with a 30-day challenge, focusing on a goal to keep you motivated. Make it a team effort and find a partner to help you stick to your commitment or maybe try an earlier class to give yourself time to enjoy your evenings without guilt. Plus, know that if you can’t get to the studio, that doesn’t mean you have to ditch your practice - you can practice yoga anywhere, anytime (but if that isn’t enough, you can practice with us online, too!)
Highland Yoga is here for you during the holidays to keep supporting your journey. At the studio, we’ll have modified holiday hours so you can still find a little escape if you need to breathe on Christmas or New Years Day - just be sure to sign up online in advance! Plus, we’ll be opening up a new location in Madison Yards soon - which means a new space to celebrate in.
Finally, we want to spread a little extra holiday cheer, which means we’re offering our best deals of the year - like a whole year of unlimited yoga for $950! Stop by a studio or click to learn more about our holiday deals and consider giving the gift of yoga.
Have a warm, safe holiday season!