How Downward Dog Makes Me a Better Mom by Dina Ramon

 I don’t claim to have been a yoga enthusiast for all of my adult life but I respect and appreciate all of the physical and mental benefits that yoga has to offer, and practiced it on and off over the years. I should have been more committed. Years of running and gym routines with nothing to counterbalance the pounding on my body have, I believe, made me more prone to injury. A recent back/hip strain was the last straw – I took up yoga again. It was the perfect prescription for my ‘mature’ body and my multitasking mind. Even better, I credit the deep twists, focused breathing and challenging stretches with enhancing some of the most important qualities of parenting that we strive for as mothers. So how does my daughter benefit from my yoga classes? For one, she gets a mommy who is more focused, with fewer episodes of flakiness. An hour of yoga with repeated downward-facing dog poses forces the blood to my head to knock out the cobwebs in there. I leave the studio with more mental clarity and energy. I’m also calmer with regards to her daily outfit selection, which definitely makes her happy. If she puts on a wrinkled, ratty t-shirt with a fancy skirt I let it go, whereas before I was prone to micromanage the process and try to get her to wear something else. Patience is certainly a virtue and I am grateful to have more of it, which I attribute to my return to the practice of yoga. Older moms, in my opinion, tend to be a little more patient anyway but a few hours a week of all points stretching of my body as far as it can go, have definitely taken my serenity factor to new levels. My daughter takes forever to brush her teeth? No worries. She forgets to pick up the clothes she left on the floor? We’ll get it later. Oh, I am still firm and make sure the rules are followed, but I am more relaxed about how she gets it done. Plus, I am gaining a stronger sense of self from the spiritual part of yoga that I just don’t get from running or lifting weights. I notice that I sit up a little straighter, and have much better balance; both important for older moms who need to keep up with little ones. Those feelings and abilities directly translate into more optimism and appreciation for the world around me that I constantly want to share with my daughter. All in all, one of the best decisions I have made in recent months – for me and for my daughter. So have a yogi day. Namaste…

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  1. 2 Responses to “How Downward Dog Makes Me a Better Mom by Dina Ramon”

  2. I adore yoga and meditation! I practiced for many years before I had my son. Then everything fell to the wayside. I have been upping my activity level…slow, but steady…and I like the physical benefits I’m getting out of it. My only problem is that the instructor who teaches at my gym, my Adult Ed program, and community programs, is a woman who is like a drill sergeant. I have old injuries that I have to be careful with and I have explained this to her, but she doesn’t care. Her classes are very unsatisfying. I have to find the right instructor for me. Then I would love to return to Namaste!!

    By Cara Meyers on Jun 14, 2012

  3. Ok you’ve inspired me. I’ve been thinking about Yoga as an add-on to walking, some weights etc. I am sorely in need of something that will help me de-stress and feel more centered. My mind-body needs to find a happy place!

    By Evelyn Catarevas on Jun 17, 2012