Why Yoga practice is On and Off the Mat

As a yoga teacher, my hope is that you never feel guilty about not getting to yoga. Yoga has been defined in many ways, by many people over so many years. To me, the heart of yoga is that it helps people to feel better. Maybe it helps the mind, the body, the soul… eventually we see there is no separation, just the feeling of better. Sometimes “better” means elation, sometimes “better” means tears, a revelation, a sense of connection, of peace, of harmony, perhaps anger, clarity, release…. Whatever comes up for us on the mat, eventually leads us to better. To feeling more like ourselves, more connected to who we are, our truth and our path. Lighter in mind and body, unburdened for a moment from the stresses of life.

To me yoga is the most beautiful, nourishing and complete form of self care. Would you feel guilty for not taking a bubble bath? Would you feel guilty for not getting a massage? Please don’t feel guilty or bad for not getting to yoga.

Instead, for a moment, pause, breathe, say something kind to yourself. Maybe there is time to get to a class, maybe in that small pause you find a little more space for you. And maybe not. Maybe at this moment in time your children need you, a loved one needs you, you’ve started a new job…. the reasons are diverse and many.

In that case, keep taking little pauses to breathe deeply and fully. For now, perhaps your yoga practice is to lie down on the floor with your legs up the wall, eyes closed, breathing, resting. When it’s right, when it’s time, with love, acceptance and compassion for yourself, you will make it back.

Yoga is on and off the mat.

Liz Hoare, teacher at Golden Yogi




Originally from Canada, I planted roots in New Zealand 16 years ago. When I’m not teaching yoga, chances are I’m running after my 3 beautiful, messy, crazy, amazing boys!

Teaching yoga was a long time dream that became a reality a few years ago. I am a qualified RYT500HR yoga teacher and I enjoy continuing my education and fuelling my yoga passion through ongoing training and workshops.

Yoga helps to bring balance into my life, it nurtures my mind body and spirit. Practicing yoga gives me ease and lightness in my body. Yoga helps me to clear and calm my mind, and find gratitude and perspective in this busy life.

Yoga has also opened up a spiritual journey for me that truly resonates with my beliefs and values. Yoga has also helped me through some of the most difficult times of my life, by giving me permission to simply be with myself and to find space to heal.

My hope is to create a sacred space of allowing, self-acceptance and inquiry. I will offer options and permission to practice yoga that feels right for your body, mind, and energy on the night. Encourage you to meet yourself just as you are, as we practice shapes, find flow, meditate and practice pranayama.

My goal is that you will feel better body, mind and soul after your yoga practice. My hope is that the practices we share on the mat will help you feel happier, more at ease and present in your life off the mat.