Stepping on the mat for the first time? That’s great!
Many people all over the world have found yoga as a way to cope with a busy lifestyle and an activity where they can look inward. They make it part of their routine to have a mindful, healthier life.
If you ask us, the sense of stillness, quiet, and slowly getting stronger is addicting. But that doesn’t negate the fact that you, as a beginner, might be feeling overwhelmed and unsure of how or where to start.
Here are some tips and tricks to get you on the right foot.
Throw your expectations out the window
It can be discouraging to see seasoned yogis on the internet do cool poses like handstands while you struggle to even touch your toes.
As a yoga newbie, that’s completely normal.
As you practice, your body will get stronger and more flexible. So toss out expectations and trust the process. Get yourself into the right mindset and let your practice flow and grow.
Understand the fundamentals of yoga
Yoga is more than just being flexible and contorting your body into odd shapes, and it’s more than a way to get fit. It’s a practice rooted in spirituality and consciousness. It works both your mind and body.
Often, yoga practices come with affirmations that help set the tone for the day or to reflect upon your day. It’s a lifestyle.
Pay attention to your breathing
The very first step of yoga is to learn how to breathe correctly. So yes, the core of any yoga practice is something we’ve been doing on autopilot for as long as we can remember.
As a beginner, start by noticing your breath. How deep or shallow do you breathe? Do you unconsciously hold your breath sometimes?
Deeply inhale and exhale through your nose, fill your lungs and feel your chest and stomach rising and falling. Then, slowly, you will notice its effects on your time on the mat.
There are a few breathing techniques, such as the Ocean’s Breath or the Ujjayi style, that you’ll eventually be exposed to as you attend classes and expand your practice.
Get comfortable with stillness
When was the last time you sat silent and just focused on breathing?
We’re constantly surrounded by so many stimuli that being still and just being can often feel strange to many of us.
Well, yoga is going to test that ability of yours to embrace stillness.
You’ll be surprised that the most challenging pose many yogis struggle with is ‘Savasana.’ It’s not something that requires crazy core strength and flexibility; it’s the pose at the end of the practice where you have to lie still.
Start with a gentle practice
We all start somewhere. There are so many poses and names for it that it’s understandably overwhelming for a newbie.
It’s also tough to constantly look at your screen or teacher for an hour to see what they’re doing instead of just following cues.
To familiarize yourself slowly with the practice, try out 10-minute exercises for a month to gradually build your strength and knowledge.
We recommend you try out classes with gentle, slow flows that can help you build a solid foundation before going for intermediate and advanced classes.
There are plenty of free resources available by content creators that make it fun but still challenging.
The last thing you want to do is drop the practice because you’re overwhelmed.
Have fun and enjoy the process
There’s truly no point in practicing yoga if you don’t enjoy it.
Over time, you’ll notice subtle changes in your body.
Whether it is better mobility in your joints and better posture or an increase in muscle strength and tone, it’s a different kind of joy when you notice your body do things it couldn’t do just a few months ago.
Always celebrate the little wins!
Join the 123RF PLUS community
All the photos featured in this article are from our 123RF PLUS collection – where you have early access to new stock photos, 3D illustrations and vectors, unlimited downloads*, and exclusive customer support, all while having a seamless ad-free experience.
You’ll be spoilt for choice with more than 80 million royalty-free stock photos, 5 million vector art, and exclusive 3D illustrations. Not to mention, 123RF PLUS saves you the headache of navigating stock photo licensing and attribution issues.
This incredible deal can be yours from USD 8.25 per month. For more information, visit here.