Today toward the end of yoga class, I went over to a new-ish student, who promptly said, “This is way harder than CrossFit!” I hadn’t expected that, so I laughed, repeated it, and after a few moments said, “yoga, you see, is not just peace, love and go-go boots, but hard, as we build strength and mobility, in order to use what we got, and also turn the mindfulness mirror inside, for self-reflection.”
Now, in a quiet moment of self-reflection, I wish I had responded differently, and I apologize if my reaction was insensitive. I had moved it into a competition; yoga vs. CrossFit. Ugh. What would’ve been a more skillful response, would’ve been to say, “hmm, it depends.” For me to simply try and hear someone’s thoughts outside of my lens of experience. Shut up, Sondra, and listen.
Honestly, for me, CrossFit would be much harder than yoga, as I would be new to it, and I’ve practiced yoga, and with practice there’s a possibility that what once was hard becomes easy (or easier). I find I actually need to continue to challenge my body, in terms of duration, repetition, and more complicated sequences and poses. Not always, and that’s what I do love about yoga, is the simplicity, the disruption of thinking (in general) and thinking (specifically) that more is better. I also cherish the offerings of rest, the encouragement to go at your own pace, and the support for not keeping up.
So, my dear new-ish student, I hear you. Yes, for now, yoga is harder than CrossFit. That can change, but… “it depends.”