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Women doing yoga on mat

When is the Best Time to Do Yoga?

Is there any best time to do yoga? When is the perfect time of the day to do yoga? The truth is, thankfully, not! While there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, as the best time for yoga varies based on the individual’s schedule, lifestyle, and preferences; it is also essential to note that some poses are energizing, while others are calming. Thus we have to first understand the nature of the poses in order to make informed decisions as to when to practice them. As a rule of thumb, never practice yoga directly after food (the only pose you can practice then is Virasana, which helps with digestion) – always wait at least an hour after food before starting your practice.

General weather climate and seasons also play a big role in shaping how one would choose to design their practice. During hot temperatures, be careful to avoid overexertion – that means it would be good to practice more slowly, with not too many challenging poses. If you still want to have a fast-paced, challenging practice, be sure to balance it with lots of cooling down poses and pranayama at the end.

In colder climates, or during the winter, you may want to have a more active practice to improve blood circulation and generate heat throughout the body, and more backbend and hip opening poses to avoid seasonal depression which comes with the shorter days and longer nights of winter.

There is a saying in ancient text , which says that Yoga should be done according to “Kala (Time), Des (Hour), Paristhiti (Environment) “A combination of these three factors would help you find when to do yoga to get the most out of it. 

So let’s have a look at different times to do yoga and what can you include :

Morning Yoga

Many yogis believe that the best time for yoga is in the morning, as it sets a positive tone for the rest of the day. Morning yoga can help energize the body and mind, boost metabolism, and improve focus and productivity. Additionally, practicing yoga in the morning can help establish a consistent routine, which can be beneficial for overall health and wellness.

Benefits of morning yoga 

Boosting metabolism: Morning yoga can be instrumental in boosting your metabolism, controlling your blood sugar levels, and promoting better digestion throughout the day. This will help you lead an active and healthy life. 

Uplifts your mood: Doing yoga in the morning reduces stress and anxiety levels, keeping you in a good mood all day long. It keeps your mind and body calm, uplifting your mood and sharpening your mind. These factors will help you smile through the day, making morning the best time to do yoga. 

Time to self-connect: Practicing yoga in the morning gives you essential time to connect with yourself before you start your hectic and stress-laden day. 

While the benefits are many, there are some downsides as well. 

Stiff body: Your body would be stiff in the morning, resulting in limited flexibility.

Not great for night owls: Morning yoga is wonderful for morning people. But if you are a night person, getting up in the morning and following an exercise regimen might not be the best time to do yoga. 

Some great poses for morning yoga include:

  • Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskar): This series of poses is a great way to warm up the body and get the blood flowing.
  • Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana): An energizing pose, great for waking up the body and elevating the mental and emotional layers.
  • Warrior 2 (Virabhadrasana 2): A grounding pose which helps strengthen the legs and core, opens the chest and shoulders, while improving balance and focus.

Afternoon Yoga

Afternoon yoga can be a great way to recharge and focus. It can help relieve stress and tension from a long day, while also providing an opportunity to stretch and move the body for an equally energetic second half of the day. 

Besides, by afternoon, you would have already undergone a certain amount of work, warming up your muscles. So, they won’t be as stiff as they would have been in the morning. Thus, you will be able to stretch more and get more out of your session. 

Some great poses for afternoon yoga include:

  • Tree Pose (Vrikshasana): This balancing pose helps improve focus and concentration, while also strengthening the legs and core.
  • Child’s Pose (Balasana): A great pose to release tension in the back and shoulders, opening the chest and hips while lengthening the side body, and promoting relaxation and calmness.
  • Camel Pose (Ustrasana): This backbend helps open up the chest and heart space, while improving posture and breathing.

Evening Yoga

Practicing yoga in the evening is a great way to wind down and prepare the body and mind for sleep. Evening yoga can help release the tensions and stresses of the day while encouraging relaxation.

Benefits of evening yoga

You are more relaxed: By evening, you have already dealt with the stresses of the day and you have gone past them. So, you are mentally more relaxed. Your body is also more relaxed and warmer, enabling you to do all kinds of poses. 

Positive energy: Evenings are usually more energetic in terms of how you feel. This is a great positive for maximizing your yoga session. 

Enhances digestion: An evening yoga session helps in better digestion of the food that you would have consumed throughout the day. 

Quality sleep: Practicing yoga a few hours before you end your day will enhance the quality of sleep as your senses, your body and your mind will be more relaxed. 

The downsides of evening yoga include:

Sleep disruption: An intense yoga session in the evening can have an adverse effect. Rather than enhancing the quality of sleep, it might result in sleep disruption. 

Lack of concentration: After a hectic day, you might have a supercharged mind that might not be able to concentrate fully on yoga itself. 

Some great poses for evening yoga include:

  • Seated Forward Fold (Paschimottanasana): This pose helps release tightness in the hamstrings and lower back, a common modern day issue especially when sitting whole day at a desk.
  • Legs Up the Wall (Viparita Karani): A great way to promote blood circulation, reduce swelling in the legs and feet, and calming the nervous system.
  • Corpse Pose (Savasana): The ultimate relaxation pose! This pose allows the body and mind to fully relax and soften.

So, the best time to do yoga is ultimately up to you and your unique individual needs and preferences. Whether you prefer morning, afternoon or evening yoga, there are poses and practices that can benefit you at any time of the day. By incorporating yoga into your daily routine, you can improve your overall health and wellness, while also cultivating a deeper connection to your body and mind. Listen to your body and trust your inner instinct, they will tell you when to do yoga!

The important thing is that you take time out during the day to include yoga in your daily routine. It is one of the best ways of increasing your fitness levels and creating a more harmonious existence. Charging your mind, body and soul, yoga not only impacts your physical health but your mental well-being as well, bringing more success in all spheres of life. Consistency is also an important factor. Whichever time of the day you choose to do yoga, you must do it consistently at that time only. This is why you must think clearly and then decide on the time so that you are able to practice the routine daily. 

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