Yoga may have hit the mainstream years ago, but the prospect of giving it a chance still intimidates many individuals. With so much media ooh-ing and ahh-ing over the complex physical and mental accomplishments of many a seasoned yogi, it’s easy to understand how some folks might get the wrong idea about what the yogic arts entail.
No yoga masters spontaneously pop into existence! It requires years, sometimes decades, of training and practice to achieve that level of strength, flexibility and discipline. If you’ve never done yoga, you have nothing to fear! It is a gentle, wholly accessible process you easily customize to fit your unique needs.
Yoga appeals to so many different kinds of people because it provides such a wealth of benefits. Along with increasing your strength and flexibility, the practice can also help in some of the following situations:
+Encouraging weight loss
+Insomnia and fatigue
+Asthma and allergies
+Depression and anxiety
+And plenty more!
Your First Class
A journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step, but you have to invest your time into making sure you take it right! Knowing how to analyze what you’re looking for and where to attend the most suitable classes is essential when learning more about yoga.
Price, times and location will always be primary concerns for anyone curious about pursuing yoga. Only consider yoga studios with qualified, experienced staffers. They will understand how to best navigate a newcomer’s needs, ensuring the maximum amount of quality stretching, breathing and meditating. No official certification board exists in the United States, but organizations providing training classes and certificates are located in most major cities. The studio’s website should list their instructors’ previous teaching experiences and how they came to master the practice.
If you happen to have any physical limitations due to age, medical condition, pregnancy or injury, you can still enjoy the wellness perks yoga offers. Never let these factors hinder your desire to give the practice a chance! Some beginner classes exclusively cater to different concerns, and the best-trained instructors know how to adapt more generalized instruction to special requirements.
No matter what you need to personally consider before starting your yoga journey, do your research! It will ensure you get the most out of your inquiries into the yogic arts and enjoy them to their fullest possible extents.
What to Expect
Beginner yoga classes aren’t terribly intense or challenging experiences. They cover the basics of breathing, meditation and properly posing. Instructors understand and address any and all beginner concerns, correcting any mistakes they notice and answering student questions. More importantly, they possess the knowledge and training necessary to help you discover your limits and adapt to them.
As you grow in mind and body, you will find yourself growing in awareness of movement and space as well. Yoga is a slow, harmonious process, so give it time. Like all sustainable solutions, it requires time and energy for results to present themselves. Never rush.
Samples of Great Beginner Poses
Your beginning yoga instructors won’t twist you into pretzel shapes! Introductory classes showcase easy poses for outer comfort and inner peace alike. You may encounter some of the following positions when attempting yoga for the first time:
+Downward Dog. Excellent for stretching out your back muscles, this pose will require you to arch your back, hands and feet flat ohttps://pinterest.com/pin/171559067027124750/n the floor. Downward dog is one of the most rudimentary and popular yoga positions.
+Corpse Pose. Lie down. Spread your arms out slightly. Your instructor will guide you through positioning your pelvis, arms and legs. The corpse pose is extremely easy, and one of the most restful and calm. It makes for an ideal cool down at the end of a session.
+Lotus Position. Even non-yogis know the lotus position! Fold your legs and let your hands fall comfortably in your lap. Close your eyes and breathe deep. Yoga is all about relaxation and reflection, and the lotus position epitomizes that particular quality.
+Tree Pose. If you can balance on one leg, then you can master tree pose. All you have to do is stand up and bend one leg so that your foot is touching at (or below, if you prefer) the knee. Then clasp your hands together as if in prayer. Although more “advanced beginner” than explicit beginner, we sometimes use this one in our open and mixed classes for all skill levels!
This is hardly a comprehensive listing, but these poses should give you an idea of what you might expect from a beginner yoga class. Your instructor will make sure you perform them correctly to avoid injury and get the maximum benefit of the stretch.
We’re Happy to Help!
Joy Yoga Center hosts lectures and classes appropriate for individuals and groups who know very little of the practice. Check the schedule for our Intro to Yoga and Basics. If you’re looking to add a little inspiration or challenge, try one of our mixed classes for practitioners of all skill levels. There, you can pick up pointers from more experienced peers in addition to your instructors.
We have several membership options for you to explore! Right now, you can sign up to pay only $89 for six months of unlimited classes. New and returning (absent 90 days or more) members can pay $39 for one month of unlimited classes – an offer not valid with our other deal. Check back regularly for updated promotions! Joy Yoga Center wants you to love yourself and the life you live. And yoga can help make that happen.
Fabulous Beginners class tonight with Loraine Frow. Breathin’, stretchin’ and laughin’…..full of joy. Namaste!
I have been wanting to try Yoga for months, so I signed up for a Living Social deal for $39 unlimited Yoga about a month ago and that has been the best investment I have made for my health and mind. I admit I was nervous when I started Yoga, but I have grown comfortable and more relaxed. When I leave class, I am more relaxed and more calm. Thank you :-) BTW Suzy Soto and Jana Zacek are exceptional instructors.
We understand all too well how the demands of work, families, hobbies and other responsibilities can leave you feeling drained and lethargic. Chronic stress actually leads to sleep disruptions rather than a cozy night of sheep-counting. Insomnia, sleep apnea, narcolepsy and other conditions are either caused by or worsened because of anxiety. Poor rest leads to poor health. You have to motivate yourself to do what it takes to live the happiest, safest life possible. Yoga is a powerful tool that can make it happen!
Why We Need Sleep
An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but sleep accomplishes much, much more than your favorite fruits. It refreshes the immune system, helping us stave off all the little nasties that cause daily interference. You will certainly feel happier and more productive without having to contend with colds and viruses.
Less than six hours of sleep makes you twice as likely to suffer from a stroke or heart attack, so regular sleep accomplishes more than just fighting everyday bugs. Studies have also linked broken sleep cycles with a heightened risk of breast cancer and diabetes.
Sleep might provide a major boost to the body, but your mind benefits just as much! Regular sleep habits improve memory and mood alike. Insomnia and other sleep disorders feed directly into depression and anxiety disorders, making the symptoms far more severe – in some cases, directly causing the conditions themselves.
Yoga: It Does a Tired Body Good!
Harvard Medical School researchers confirmed a link between regular yoga practice and an overall improvement in mental and physical health. After eight weeks of routine yoga and meditation (including mantras), participants reported much more satisfying sleep patterns than ever before. And this applies to every factor involved I the sleep cycle! Their sleep efficacy, quality, onset and length all received a significant boon. Participants also reported fewer sleep disruptions.
A soothing session of yoga slows down the heart rate. If your ticker’s tocking races, that can cause serious sleep disturbances in addition to cardiac issues – not to mention depression and anxiety. Spend 10 to 15 minutes before bedtime each night unwinding with specific poses meant to calm your body and your mind in equal measure. If you need more time, take more time. Results may not be instantaneous, so find a routine that feels comfortable and natural first, then stick with it for a few months.
If you’re considering yoga as a natural method for improving your sleep habits you might want to also incorporate meditation. Whether relaxing instrumentals or chanting “om” carries you towards inner peace, meditative practices can help you achieve the restful body and mind necessary for the best possible sleep.
Always pay close attention to your breathing. Long, deep inhales and measured exhales will help lower your heart rate and calm any anxieties or stressors currently tensing up your muscles. Mindful breathing is an essential element of any yogi’s practice, and particularly indispensable when it comes to combatting sleep disorders.
Because yoga works brilliantly for bolstering and quieting energy, it’s important to know which poses work best for ensuring a satisfying night of sleep. Give some of the following a try when piecing together your nightly routine:
+Lotus Position. Simple and classic, the lotus position involves sitting upright, crossing your legs, and resting your hands in your lap or on your knees. This pose is known for allowing clear breathing – a must when meditating your way to relaxation.
+Corpse Pose. It doesn’t get more sleep-inducing than this! Rest on your back and splay your arms out from your side. Breathe deep. Meditate if you desire. Just make sure you don’t fall asleep on the floor!
+Child’s Pose. Sit on your knees and bend at the waist. Stretch your arms forward on the ground. This restful pose is often sandwiched between more challenging, demanding counterparts in yoga classes. It leaves the back feeling simply amazing.
+Plow. For those who can pull it off, plow pose provides an excellent workout for the back. Rest your shoulders and head on the ground. Lift your back and stretch your legs over your head. Breathing is a little more difficult with the plow, so don’t feel like you have to hold it for too long.
Our classes might very well provide you with the tools needed to live a healthy, satisfying life. Or at least enjoy a lovely night’s rest! Contact us for more information about our yoga classes and what they can do to help you sleep better – and live better as a result!