Tips For Your First Yoga Class

  • Avoid jumping straight into a hot yoga class on the first go, as it can be incredibly intense – start with non-heated classes.

  • Let the teacher know you’re a beginner — don’t be shy about this, it will only benefit you!

  • All your personal belongings like your mobile phone etc. should be left in a safe place outside the studio.

  • Let the instructor know if you would prefer to not have a hands on adjustment.

  • Don’t walk out during savasana (unless it’s an emergency).

  • Avoid practicing with a full stomach, a small healthy snack before is fine.

  • If ever you are feeling tired or out of breath come into child’s pose — don’t feel like you can’t take a rest because other people are going strong. Yoga is an individual practice, so take care of yourself!

Find A Teacher You Like

Find a yoga teacher you like and resonate with. You’re not going to like every class you go to and that’s ok, instructors teach in different ways. The best way to discover whose classes you enjoy is to begin by trying many different classes, different styles and different teachers and then begin to narrow it down so that your practise can become more focused and fun!

Practice As Much As Possible

A beginner should do yoga as often as possible, even if it’s only for 15 minutes a day or once a week.

Don’t feel you can’t practice because you don’t have enough time…Yoga is flexible to fit into your schedule and even 5 minutes a day will be beneficial. The more you practice the better you will feel, and when you begin to experience how incredible yoga can make you feel, you’ll want to do it all the time.

A good starting point would be to aim for 2-3 classes a week, but you can also do shorter sessions at home (even 10 minutes in the morning) once you have a better idea of what to do.

Creating a habit and practicing regularly will help you see improvements and results faster, and who doesn’t want to feel good all the time?

Yoga Equipment

You really don’t need much when it comes to beginning a yoga practice. See these few items as an investment in your health and well-being.

  • Comfortable clothing that you can move in, but not too loose that it can get in the way.

  • A yoga mat with good grip — there’s nothing worse than slipping when you’re trying to hold a pose.

  • Yoga block — this is a handy prop to have for providing support in your practice.

  • Yoga strap — an ideal prop for beginners, as it helps give you that extra length when you need it.

Yoga mats and props are usually always available at a yoga studio, and although props are fine to use, having your own mat is much nicer and more hygienic.

Yoga Breathing

Yoga breathing is a big part of what you need to learn when starting your yoga practice. Learning to control your breath is integral to yoga and its benefits.

Pranayama is the formal name for this practice of breath control — “Prana” is a Sanskrit word that means life force, while “ayama” means extending or stretching. Therefore, the word “pranayama” translates to the control of life force or the extension of breath.

Here are a few types of basic yoga breathing techniques that will get you started:

Abdominal Breathing

Abdominal breathing is also known as diaphragmatic or belly breathing and it’s one of the most common basic breathing techniques you’ll find in yoga. It’s a great beginners yoga breathing exercise as it’s not complicated and helps you bring awareness to your breath.

It helps to reduce stress and calm the mind.

In a seated position or lying down, place one hand on your chest and one hand on your belly. Notice where you’re breathing into more and then inhale to breathe directly into your belly and as you exhale, try to empty your belly of as much air as you can. Use your hands as a guide to see where the breath is going and adjust accordingly if you feel your chest is raising more than your belly.

Ujjayi Pranayama Or “Victorious Breath”

Ujjayi Pranayama is most commonly used in Ashtanga and Vinyasa yoga.

This breathing technique is done by breathing through your nostrils and creating an ocean-like sound by constricting the back of the throat — like trying to fog up a mirror with your mouth closed. This type of breathing aims to anchor the mind during your practice and can be both energizing/heating and relaxing.

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