Latham Thomas’ Advice for Reinvigorating Your Practice: Active Rest

Every September, National Yoga Month inspires us to get on our mats and reminds us of the magic inherent in the mind-body connection. But for many practitioners, COVID-era livestream classes have run their course.


We can all admit there are times when we feel like the last thing we want to do is look at a computer screen. If Zoom and pandemic fatigue have all but dulled your senses, Brooklyn-based Latham Thomas, founder of the maternity lifestyle brand Mama Glow, and author of Own Your Glow, suggests an alternate pathway to reinvigorate your practice. “This moment presents an opportunity to lean into the limbs of yoga and focus on philosophy more than physicality,” she says. Collectively, we’re restless, anxious, even sluggish; full of uncertainty about the future. Plus, she adds, “a lot of people are bored with their practice and say that it’s just not as fulfilling.” But there’s a silver lining to coronavirus lockdown, according to Thomas: By slowing down and leaning into unpleasant and uncomfortable feelings, we tune in to what it is we really need in order to thrive. This “reprogramming” can help us reignite our inner spark and reclaim our lost yoga glow. “Your emotional body wants to rest—so how can you practice active rest?” she asks. “How much space can you make for yourself? What would it feel like to center your needs—not your physical needs, but your psychic needs? Use that as a compass for wisdom. Reclaiming your yoga glow is about expanding your capacity to receive.”

Thanks for watching!

see also I Tried Dopamine Fasting, and It Helped Me Appreciate the Present

Everything we would normally do to anchor ourselves in times of stress, anxiety, or tension—like gathering in our yoga classes, embracing our friends and families, and being in proximity to other living, breathing, bodies—has been missing from our lives for months. “There’s collective mourning—a weight, a heaviness connected to everyone, we are all feeling the effects of the same set of circumstances, but in different ways all at the same time,” she says. “We’ve been cooped up inside—but we’ve also had to deal with what’s happening in the world around us—and we’re not getting the community lift that we’re used to.”

Thomas says the invitation now, for all of us, is to listen to what’s happening inside of us. “What does our internal landscape look like at this moment?” she asks. “There is another pathway that is also yoga—it’s going beyond what is challenging us in a different way that’s not necessarily physical.”

For a yoga mat that helps you find your alignment, try Ewedoos Eco-Friendly Yoga Mat with Alignment Lines

What Is Active Rest?

For Thomas, the practice of active rest begins by giving ourselves permission to feel rather than think. “In this time of quarantine and unrest, it’s important to anchor ourselves in possibility, revel in grace, and embrace the energy of ease,” she says. By channeling emotional intelligence, we defer to the parasympathetic nervous system to ascertain the style of embodied practice that will work best for us at the moment. “We can reclaim an intentional practice around rest that is more reflective and less robotic,” Thomas says, adding that active rest can include movement.

Source Article