This ad from Yoga Reebok wants us to work harder. "There are two ways to do things, the hard way or the easy way...it takes grit, sweat, resolve." Check out the expression on the face of the model at the end of her yoga session (not the usual post yoga buzz I'm going for in my classes). Reebok obviously wants to portray the fierce determination of a great competitor. My biggest problem with this idea is that yoga IS NOT a competition.
That is not to say that you won't work hard in yoga classes, it's just that the size or complexity of the poses isn't the goal of yoga. Some may easily accomplish a beautiful physical practice such as this, but it is not necessary. A yogi can find calm while remaining determined in movement (or stillness). A yogi can appreciate the subtle aspects of poses, making them seemingly new every day.
I've lived "grit, sweat, and resolve", but currently, my yoga is teaching me to work smarter as well as working hard. My yoga is teaching me to look inward and love myself. Because of that, I've begun to ask for the things that I really want when I'm off the mat. This has taken a great deal of work on my part!
Yoga is life changing. I've lived and loved the "work harder" phase of my practice, but you can miss something sweet if you just go for the "grit, sweat, and resolve". Work smarter, find rest, work with focus, practice attention to detail, and find peace and stillness. Yoga is an amazing mind-body connection, and not just beautiful poses.
Students work in my classes, but I hope there is more. I want my students to leave feeling amazing and finding a new connection with themselves.
Live, love and practice yoga!