Yoga for Beginners
Yoga is the best way to transform your body and health…namaste. Whether you’re devoted to the downward dog or don’t know your child’s pose from your tree pose. Yoga was traditionally used as a way to encourage spiritual growth through the transcendence of the ego. Today these elements are still a big part of modern yoga practice. From increasing flexibility to boosting focus, yoga offers a plethora of benefits. The best way to experience yoga is with open arms, an open mind and an open heart, but as adults sometimes we lose sight of the beauty of being a beginner. Here are a few things every beginner should know.
Benefits of Yoga
Yoga is more than physical activity. It’s a practice that encompasses deep philosophy and promotes self-awareness, strength, perseverance, compassion, patience and love. With yoga, you connect your mind and your body, breath and movement, which are considered fundamental components of all humans. Yoga practices focuses on a series of postures that are designed to increase your strength flexibility whilst also focusing on your breathing. It centers your mind, your thoughts and relaxes you.
Be Positive and Patient
Like with any new activity, practicing yoga at first may seem challenging and impossible to do. The physical postures might be difficult for any beginner. And although you were in good shape before beginning, you might be aching for days because you are engaging muscles you are not used to using. You may have days where you want to give up, but you must be patient. Dedicate specific days and times to practice yoga and stick to it.
Feeling Engaged and Comfortable
Find a studio with like-minded people that will help you commit and show up. When starting, try visiting a variety of classes with different teachers, so you can find a class that best works for you. You want to be a part of a class that will inspire and motivate you.
Most mats get slippery once you start sweating and don’t provide sufficient padding. You want to avoid getting hurt with a rubber mat that becomes slippery when wet. You’re going to want to invest in a yoga mat that is sweat activated and slip-proof.
Be Inquisitive About the Postures
If you are not sure about a certain pose, take the time to ask questions and learn. Whether you ask during the class or connect with your teacher after. This will help to prevent injuries from occurring, and it will also help you learn about the strengths of your own body. Yoga is about flexibility, don’t be hard on yourself and have a lot of patience. Yoga is a practice.
The Yoga Mindset
Yoga is a self-inquiry. Everything that is done during yoga, whether it’s a yoga pose, a meditation, a mantra or a breathing technique, has the purpose of encouraging us to connect to our bodies and our life experience in a more meaningful way. Understanding the balance of effort and release in your yoga practice requires constant attention and sensitivity and has profound meaning in our everyday lives as a meditation on balancing stress and relaxation. Understanding how to move into extremely challenging poses effortlessly, with a calm mind and steady breath, is invaluable to us in our busy lives.
When doing yoga, you’ll want to be comfortable. This means no loose tops or t-shirts that will end up falling over your head and exposing your tummy every time you go to Downward Dog or a headstand. Opt for long, fitted tops that stay put and keep you covered no matter what you do. Wear a sports bra that will give you extra coverage while stretching and extending. You’ll also want to wear thin fabrics that will not bunch up or retain moisture, but instead wick sweat away from the body. Bike shorts are a great option for yoga. Long pants should be snug, but they should be able to stretch. Compression tights have the advantage that they will help your body’s awareness so you hold your positions better.