So you’ve been practicing yoga for a while now and have experienced all the benefits yourself—the natural next step is for you to want to share all those amazing benefits with your entire family.
But, this might be easier said than done.
Sometimes yoga is one of those things that people have already made up their minds about—they’re either into it or they’re not.
If you’ve been struggling to get your family to join in on your yoga practice, no need to worry. There are a lot of (subtle) ways to not only get your family practicing with you, but for them to enjoy it, too!
Opt for Inspiration
When it comes to encouraging your family to practice yoga, being pushy is not the way to go. Sometimes we think that reminding people how good yoga is for us, listing facts and quoting studies, will have everyone running to their nearest studio.
But in actuality, the result is quite the opposite. When we shove ‘good reasons’ down peoples’ throats, it tends to deter them rather than sway them.
Aim to inspire, not criticize.
We want our families to feel excited about practicing yoga, not guilt-tripped into it, right? So, we have to show rather than tell.
Instead of preaching about the benefits, slip them slyly into a conversation. If a family member asks how your day is going, tell them it’s great because of the amazing yoga practice you started out your day with.
Or, let them know how much fun you’re having with yoga. Forget listing off all the benefits—having fun will be more than enough reason for them to want to join you.
Subtle hints will be more effective than pushy ‘arguments’ for starting a yoga practice. Show your family how it’s changed your life and they’ll find it difficult not to follow.
You may also like: Yoga Teachers Training Goa
Walk the Walk—All the Time
On a similar note, bring your yoga practice into your everyday lifestyle.
That is, instead of keeping your practice solely on the mat, implement lessons learned through yoga into your entire life.
Stay present. Make healthy choices. Live free of judgment. Keep breathing.
Eventually, your family members will pick up on this and they’ll want a little taste of the practice that’s made such a transformation in your life.
Mix It up
Yoga doesn’t have to take place at the studio or in your designated yoga room.
If you have kids, play with yoga in the living room or outside. Let them practice with you or play around you.
Maybe you see how many times they can run/crawl underneath your Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-Facing Dog) before you move on to your next asana (pose).
Whatever you do, make it fun.
There are tons of yoga festivals out there now that are totally family friendly. With events for both kids and adults, festivals are a great way to incorporate yoga into a family vacation.
If you don’t have kids and want your partner or spouse to start practicing with you, look into a yoga retreat. Chances are there will be one in your area or within driving distance.
Or if you’re looking for more of a getaway, check out retreats held in another state or country for something different. It’s a great way to get started slowly and take a vacation!
Not in a learn-how-to-do-full-splits kind of way, but in a practice-the-way-you-want-to-practice kind of way.
What I mean by this is: let your family members practice in a way that works for them.
We don’t all practice yoga in the same way. Some of us like a quieter, slower practice while others like to move and groove to music, and some of us might like a little bit of both.
The main point is that we’re practicing. It’s important to let go of control over anybody else’s practice. As much as you value your own practice, chances are they’ll value theirs just as much.
Getting our families to practice yoga with us can be challenging. But as long as we stay patient, compassionate and free of judgment, we’ll probably start seeing results.
However, it’s important to remember that yoga just might not be your family members’ favorite thing—that’s okay. Keep your practice strong and continue to live it both on and off your mat.
Even if the practice itself doesn’t rub off, a lot of the healthy habits you pick up will.
What are some tactics you’ve used to convince your family to start practicing yoga? Let us know in the comments!