Do you ever find yourself rolling out your mat to practice and ending up in multiple variations of what basically amounts to Savasana (corpse pose)? When schedules are busy, time is short, and we are tired, getting inspired to bust-out an energetic yoga practice at home is difficult.

I often find that my after-work yoga practice consists of Uttanasana (standing forward bend), down dog, 1-2 standing poses, and then almost immediately moves to pigeon (the forward folded relaxed version) and supine poses. Noticing this pattern, I decided to brainstorm a list of ideas for firing up my (and your) home practice. Here’s what I came up with:

  • Invite a friend to practice together: You may not be able to do this every evening after work, but once a week or a few times a month, call up a friend and schedule a yoga date. Practicing together can encourage us to do poses that we often forget about (or avoid) and gives us someone with whom to share our little successes on the mat.
  • Join an online yoga challenge: A personal favorite of mine is a FaceBook group called 30 Day Yoga Challenge, where teacher Amy Ippoliti posts a monthly task for group members to attempt every day for 30 days. In addition to physical asana, she also chooses a strategy for green living to incorporate into our daily routines.
  • Pick a pose: Pull out a yoga book or magazine, choose a pose that you have always wanted to do, and make a plan. What does it take to do that pose? How are you going to get there? Think of at least 2-3 poses that will help you attain the one you want to do, and then do these warm-up poses consistently in your home practice. It’s amazing how fast you will make progress when you know where you want to go!
  • Find a class you’ve never taken before, and go: How will this help your home practice? Taking class with new teachers gives us interesting new ways to look at the practice, and it gives us something to take home and play with for the next few weeks or months.
  • Check out Yogaglo: Yogaglo is an online, subscription-based yoga “studio” where you can take unlimited classes with many different teachers, any time of the day or night. It’s inexpensive, convenient, and a great way to get exposed to new ideas and energized when practicing at home by yourself.
  • Change of scenery: Move your mat to the back patio, or better yet, leave the mat behind, take a hike, and practice in the woods or on the beach when you feel inspired.
  • Inspire your space: If you need to practice indoors, spruce up your practice area with some new artwork, candles, or tunes that get you excited to be on your mat.
  • Finally, have fun: Yoga doesn’t have to be structured the way your teachers taught you. Your body is unique and your practice can be too. Explore your body in new ways, make up your own poses that feel good, and be creative. Take initiative to make the practice feel like your own, and over time, it will become uniquely yours.
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