People who have yet to start a yoga practice may feel intimidated by what they perceive as yoga. Perhaps this is because they equate yoga only with the physical, outward aspect of yoga — the asanas (postures). And if yoga is only about being able to contort and twist your body into these difficult postures, then yea, yoga can be pretty intimidating.
The good news is that the physical is only one aspect of yoga, a tool to help us go inward; the real goal of yoga is not the physical posture but an inner state of stillness:
Yoga is the stilling of the changing states of the mind. ~ Yoga Sutra 1: 2
And when we begin to taste the sweetness of inner stillness, our lives begin to change in a very organic and natural way. In other words, it’s not forced change from the outside in but a natural growth from the inside out.
Others may feel intimidated by yoga because of their present life condition and feel like they need to get over certain things before they can begin to practice yoga.
The truth is that many people begin their yoga practice with deep rooted stress, trauma, neuroses, and addictions. Over time and with continued practice, though, they find themselves letting go of these past burdens. Why is that? Simply because they find something they enjoy more — inner stillness and connection.
So don’t let the fear of the physical postures or some bad habit hinder you from starting a yoga practice. Simply start the practice and change and growth will come.
There is no judgment here. We are all doing the very best we can at any given moment. Walk softly. Be kind. Have compassion always — for yourself and for those around you. Breathe.