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Visualization as a Practice Technique

ashtanga practice visualization yoga Oct 31, 2017

Ever consider using visualization in your practice? 

Visualization, or mental imagery, has long been used by top athletes as part of training. I figured if Michael Phelps uses visualization, then I probably should too.

Studies show that mental imagery can help both mentally and physically. I tend to use it primarily with really difficult poses. Here are my tips for your visualizing yourself in an asana.

  • Make a mental image of what you want the pose to look like.
  • Imagine what your body would actually feel like in that pose. What would be working? What would be activated? How exactly would you feel physically?
  • Now imagine how you would feel emotionally. Would you feel confident? Would you feel relaxed? Would you feel effortless? Would you feel calm? Would you feel like a badass?
  • Visualize the posture from start to finish. Imagine your breath. Get specific, don't forget the details.
  • You can do this for a few moments before the posture or you can do it outside of your practice - or try both!
  • Tim told me years ago that when he would feel unmotivated to practice he would imagine the Rishis at the end of his mat keeping him in line and watching him practice. I love this visualization too.
  • You can use visualization for lots of different things. Don't limit it to your practice. Use visualization before difficult conversations to get really clear about the outcome that you want. Use it before important meetings so that you can act with more intention.
  • Write it down! This will help you get even clearer.
  • Finally, visualization takes practice too!

Watch the video to learn more.

See all my online teachings here. 

Photo by Meghan Powell.

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About Jen René

Hey there! I'm a dedicated Ashtanga teacher and fourth series practitioner. I'm also a Pilates enthusiast. I taught my first class in 2005. And since then I have learned lots of amazing tricks that can help you on your own yoga journey.


Connect with Me! @jenreneyoga