Yoga is for everyone, and you can get started with it in a way that works for you
Yoga is a great way to get more flexible, reduce stress and improve your fitness. You can find yoga classes all over the world, but if you want to start your journey in the comfort of your own home, you’ll need a good beginner’s routine. If you’re already a little flexible and fit, it’s easy to get started with yoga at home. But even if you’ve never done any exercise before, there’s no need to worry: yoga is for everyone, and you can get started with it in a way that works for you.
Yoga is great for people of all fitness levels—even those who are just starting out or have been inactive for years! The best part about practicing yoga at home is that there are so many different styles available, from gentle stretching poses like Hatha Yoga (which helps relax muscles) to asanas (poses) with more complex movements like Advanced Vinyasa Flow (which requires balance while moving through multiple postures).
Pick the right kind of yoga
Before you start your practice, you’ll need to decide what kind of yoga is right for you. There are a variety of types that fall under the umbrella term “yoga,” so it’s important to do your research and figure out what makes the most sense for you.
Don’t feel like you have to stick with popular styles–there are plenty of off-beat options that can be more your speed. Just remember that before embarking on any new journey (yoga poses included), it’s a good idea to ease into things and find out what works best for your body. You don’t have to be a yogi expert from day one; in fact, we recommend attending a few different classes before choosing one as your style of choice. So without further ado:
Hatha: The practice is meant to align your skin, muscles, and bones. You move slowly from pose to pose, which gives you time to focus on the transitions between the postures as well as alignment in each posture. This form can be perfect for those who consider themselves beginners or who want a gentle workout at home while they’re new at their practice!
Don’t be intimidated by other students in the class
Don’t feel intimidated by other students in the class. Don’t compare yourself to them. Focus on your own progress, and don’t worry if you can’t do what the teacher is doing or what others are doing. Your body is different than other people’s bodies, and that’s okay!
The most important thing is that you’re not comparing yourself to other students. Yoga is a very personal practice, and everyone has bad days, so focus on yourself and your own progress rather than worrying about if someone else appears to be better than you.
Head to the studio in loose and comfortable clothing. Don’t worry about looking like you just rolled out of bed—yoga studios are typically filled with people wearing leggings, T-shirts, and other everyday athletic wear. Make sure you bring a bottle of water with you to stay hydrated during class. You’ll probably also need an exercise mat, which most studios offer to rent or borrow for free. If you plan on doing any poses that involve sitting on the floor (like many seated forward bends or twists), it can be helpful to bring a towel to place under your hips for extra padding and support.
You might want to eat a light meal (avoid anything heavy or fried) two hours before class, so that your stomach is settled by the time yoga starts. In general, avoid practicing yoga with a full stomach—especially if you’re going into any inversions (in which your head is below your heart). And don’t forget: no shoes allowed! Many gyms and yoga studios have areas dedicated specifically for removing shoes before entering the practice space. Of course, leave your cell phone at home, or turned off in another room if it isn’t possible not to bring it along.
It’s best to arrive 15 minutes early—that way you have plenty of time settle in before class starts. Once there, use the bathroom as needed; some teachers might incorporate savasana into their classes at the end so students can relax in stillness without needing a bathroom break beforehand. When it comes time for class start, you should be ready and waiting!
Remember to breath
- Yoga is a system of physical, mental, and spiritual practices or disciplines that originated in ancient India.
- It is a meditative practice that can have profound physical benefits.
- Breathing exercises are an important part of yoga.
- Proper breathing helps you focus your mind and relax your body.
- Breathing is key to maximizing the benefits of yoga because it provides oxygen to muscles, which allows them to stretch more easily.
- Breathing also releases endorphins (which makes us happy) and lowers cortisol levels (which reduces stress).
Here are some rules for breathing like a yogi:
It’s okay not to know what to do
The first time you step up to your yoga mat, you may feel a little nervous. Will I know what to do? What if I can’t do the poses? What if I’m not flexible enough? Don’t worry about any of this!
In yoga, there is no judgment. Yoga is about letting go of self-criticism and noticing how you feel in each pose. It is okay if your body doesn’t bend into the shape shown by the instructor or other students in class; it is okay if you need a break during a long hold; it is okay to make mistakes. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t do it! To get the most out of yoga, remember that you are your own teacher—know what feels right for your body and listen to yourself to avoid injury.
Find a studio with good teachers
Yoga’s style and vocabulary may vary from studio to studio, so if you’re new to the practice, find a place that offers your ideal environment. Consider going with a friend who has experience practicing yoga.
Besides deciding on what type of class you want to take, it’s also important to look for teachers who are kind, professional and know how to safely push you out of your comfort zone. Most studios will offer introductory rates that allow you try out several classes before committing. If you decide that yoga isn’t for you, don’t worry – there are countless other ways to keep fit and healthy.