Every human being is different at any given moment in the day, the season, the year…
To say there is one perfect time to practice yoga in an overarching sense would be wrong. Our bodies, our needs, our state of mind changes daily and is not uniformly like that of any other person.
In order to know when the best time to practice yoga is for you, you must look introspectively. Are you a get-up-and-go first thing in the morning type of person, or does it take you a couple of hours to ease into the day? Are you one who loves the cold months and feels energized by the cold, or do you prefer to hibernate? The practice of yoga is every bit about knowing yourself truly from the inside out, so really getting to know yourself is the first step of knowing when you will have the best yoga practice for you.
Many believe that morning is the ideal time to practice yoga. There are many sun salutations that help your body, mind, and soul welcome the day. A full yoga practice can be done at this time. Ideally, the morning yoga routine is practiced upon waking, before anything else is done for the day. Irregardless of the time of day and no matter how energized one feels after a yoga routine, Savasana, or corpse pose, should be done at the close of every yoga practice.
The second most ideal and recommended time to practice yoga is the early evening, typically around sunset. This time of day can also bring a full yoga practice, but perhaps not as active of one. It is recommended that a series of seated forward bends be performed in an evening yoga practice as well as a small backbend and an inversion.
Another great way to explore the best times to do yoga is to look at it through seasons. Your yoga practice does not need to be and should not be the same throughout the year. Your body feels different with different seasons, so yoga will feel differently depending on the changing seasons.
Summer months may be too warm for certain practices and over-exertion may be a possibility. Take it easy in the summer and pay attention to the way the heat is making your body feel. For example, a shoulder stand is going to be more cooling than a headstand, so this may be a better choice for a summer inversion.
Autumn is a great time to open your center, your heart with your practice. Big movements are going to feel great with the cooling of the weather and will help you open your heart.
Winter months bring cold and slow movements. Take your time with your practice in the winter. Move slowly as your muscles warm up, taking your time with everything. Be mindful with your body and your practice.
Spring days bring more sun, so adding a longer sun salutation to your spring practice is a great way to welcome the sun. Spring brings newness to life, so try adding newness to your practice, such as new asanas.
No matter when you practice, it is recommended that you have a regularity about it. Too much change is uncomfortable for your body and will prevent you from having a deep yoga practice. Keep a basis to your practice and make changes as necessary depending on how you feel in the current time of day and season. Listen to your body.