Best Time To Do Yoga
We know that yoga is great for the body and the mind. We know all the amazing benefits and all the amazing things it offers. It wouldn’t still be around if we didn’t know all of this. But the issue many people face when incorporating it into their routines is that we’re just busy.
We’ve got work, kids, family, and other commitments weighing down our schedule, and it is really hard to find the time to fit yoga into our busy lifestyles. While the truly ideal time for yoga is whenever you can fit it in, we’re going to look at when is the best time to do yoga… morning or night.
Yoga In the Morning
Sometimes when I think of someone doing yoga, I picture someone doing yoga on some remote beach or at the top of the mountain while the sun rises in the distance. It seems so peaceful, which is why I’m sure many people love to start their mornings with yoga (even if they don’t have that picturesque location I mentioned above). So, let’s examine what’s the best time to do yoga by exploring the pros and cons of yoga in the morning…
Pros of Yoga in the Morning
- Sets the Tone
When you start your day with any form of self care, you’re bound to have a better day. But, there’s just something about starting your day with yoga that can set the tone for the rest of your day. It’s a fantastic way to wake up your body that will just slow the pace of your morning and your mind.
- Allows you to Focus on an Intention
Many people enjoy setting an intention with their yoga practice. And by setting your intention with a practice in the morning, you can use that time to set an intention for the entire rest of the day. By doing this, I truly believe you’ll be setting yourself up for a successful and focused day.
- Wakes up the Body
I don’t know about you, but whenever I crawl out of bed, I am stiff. My joints are stiff, my muscles feel tight, and it makes sense. We’ve been lying still all night and our bodies are simply less flexible and more rigid in the early morning. By doing yoga first thing, you’re able to work out the kinks while allowing your body to wake up along with your mind.
- Makes it a Priority
Our last big positive for doing yoga in the morning, in our debate on the best time to do yoga is that it makes yoga the priority. As I mentioned earlier, the tough part of having a consistent yoga practice is that it is hard to work into our busy schedules. By doing yoga first, you are putting it at the top of your list and getting it done before any of the unexpected things life throws your way that day!
Cons of Yoga in the Morning
While it sounds picturesque to wake up and do a yoga flow to slow down your morning, that may not always be the case. I don’t know about you, but there are many mornings when I have every intention of waking up 45 minutes early, but when that alarm sounds, I hit the snooze. If this is like you, you may hit snooze one too many times, leaving your yoga practice rushed.
If you plan on waking up an extra 45 minutes early, but then actually get up 15 minutes early, that is still admirable, but your yoga practice may not be everything you wanted it to be. So, if you’re one who struggles to get up early, this is definitely a con to consider.
- Too Stiff
While I said above that yoga in the A.M. is a great way to wake the body up, you may also look at this as a con. If you’re wanting to get a good, sweaty yoga session in with all the bends, twists, and flows, you may want to consider later in the day. In the morning, you’re just not as flexible as you are later in the day. So, if you’re wanting your yoga practice to be more of a workout, you may not reap all the benefits first thing in the morning.
Yoga in the Evening
Now, while my go-to mental image of picturesque yoga may be at sunrise, I’m sure many people would much prefer doing it on a mountain or beach at sunset just as well. The colors are still beautiful and you don’t have to jump out of bed to make it there. So, here are some pros and cons of doing yoga in the evening.
Pros of Yoga in the Evening
- Relaxes the Body
Yoga is incredibly relaxing. And, after a long day at work or rushing the kids to and from all of their activities, this could be a wonderful wind down to your day. It allows you to take time for yourself and slow your pace from all the chaos.
- Great Way to De-Stress
Just as it relaxes the body, yoga in the evening will also bring down your stress levels. With the moves along with deep breathing, your heart, mind, and body will feel the stress of the day melt away, which is another reason yoga in the evening could be the best time to do yoga for you.
- Prepares you for Bed
With all of this winding down and de stressing, it’s going to be a lot easier to get in bed and fall asleep! There have actually been several studies stating that yoga improves your level and quality of sleep, so I can imagine doing it in the evening would help this even more!
- Replaces Bad Bedtime Habits
Often, we’re so busy during the day that our evenings are very lazy, filled with some less than impressive habits. By doing yoga in the evening, you would spend more time on yourself with an activity that has lots of benefits and less time looking at your phone or snacking on a bag of chips or a pint of ice cream!
Cons of Yoga in the Evening
- Easier to Make Excuses
As the day wears on, our self-discipline can wear off. While we may have woken up with every intention to have an amazing yoga practice in the evening, the reality is that it will be much easier to create an excuse to skip. By the evening, you’re tired and worn out. Whether it’s a long day at the office, your child acting up, or something going awry, it’ll be a lot easier to skip your evening yoga session as opposed to doing it first thing in the morning.
- Can Bring the Day with You
Lastly, yoga may be a great way to release all the stress from the day, but that’s only if you’re willing and able to let it. Some days are just rough, and it would be easy to bring those stresses and worries to your yoga practice. This would make it less enjoyable and beneficial for you.
The Best Time To Do Yoga?
So, when is the best time to do yoga? Both morning and afternoon yoga sessions have their own pros and cons, and at the end of the day the answer lies within you. Based on the lists above, think about yourself and your lifestyle. Think about when you could realistically work in a nice yoga session. Think about when it sounds the best for you.
Are you more of an early bird who likes some alone time in the morning to start the day on the right foot? Then, morning yoga may work best. Do you have a stressful job that leaves you feeling anxious and stressed, leaving you struggling to fall asleep? If so, give evening yoga a try!
So overall, the best time to do yoga is the time that you can work it in and that works best for you!