The Ultimate Guide To Yoga For Beginners

Jul/23/2021 / by Richa Sharma

A month ago, almost everyone’s social media feed was most likely filled with yoga postures as the world celebrated International Yoga Day. But, how often do you see someone executing a headstand against a beautiful setting and think, “Yoga isn’t for me.” Or, do you ever think to yourself, “I can’t barely reach my toes, how can I practice yoga?” “Yoga for beginners” seems like a foreign concept, doesn’t it?

As newbies, we sometimes associate yoga with difficult, limb-twisting positions. Yoga isn’t just about reaching your toes or extending your arms 98 degrees to the north. It’s a simple method of reconnecting with yourself via the use of your breath, body, and mind. More importantly, contrary to popular belief, yoga is actually quite simple and straightforward to do.

So, it doesn’t matter whether you’re not Ms. Flexible or even Mr. Stretchable, or if you’re starting yoga just at age of 40, or if you have hidden love handles that are worrying you out – simply dispel all those stereotypes before you start your yoga practice! You are the only one who is seeing you, so just loosen up. This adventure is sure to offer you a lot of fun and relaxation!

In this blog, we’ve outlined all the necessary elements you need to know about yoga if you’re a beginner, including simple yoga postures and what to consider before starting your session. However, before we delve into that, let’s first understand the benefits of practising yoga.

Benefits of Yoga For Beginners

Yoga is beneficial to both physical and emotional wellness for people of all ages. In addition, whether you are undergoing treatment for an illness, recuperating from surgery, or living with a chronic disease, yoga may become an essential component of your treatment plan and perhaps speed healing.

To get a better understanding of how yoga can leave a positive impact on your body, check out this documentary created by Uplift that talks about the science behind yoga.

Simple Yoga Postures for Beginners

To help you, we’ve listed the most effective, yet basic yoga workouts for beginners that can help loosen out your body and center your mind.

1. Mountain Pose (Tadasana)

This position teaches how to stand majestically still, like a mountain. The name is derived from the word ‘Tada,’ which signifies a mountain. Mountain Pose is the foundation for all standing poses; it engages the major muscle groups and promotes attention and concentration. This pose may appear to be “just standing,” but there’s a lot more going there.

Tadasana
Image credits: Pexels

How to do it:

  • Stand with your feet together and heels moderately apart, with your arms placed beside your torso.
  • Extend your toes and distribute your weight equally over your feet. Thigh muscles should be firm and rotated inwards. Rotate your shoulders back and down, relaxing them.
  • Exhale by elongating your body and releasing your shoulder blades away from your head. You can also place your hands in prayer posture in front of your chest or just by your sides.
  • Inhale long, slow, deep breaths.

Beginner’s Tip:

To begin, check your alignment by leaning against a wall. You could even lift and extend your hands. Remember to keep taking a deep breath every minute.

2. Tree Pose (Vrksasana)

The tree pose is an excellent standing balance for beginners to practice in order to acquire attention and clarity, as well as to learn to breathe whilst standing and maintaining body balance on one foot. It imitates a tree’s stable posture. This pose is often considered as easy yoga for beginners.

Vrksasana
Image credits: Pexels

How to do it:

  • Begin with your legs together and your right foot on the inside of your left upper thigh. Put your hands together in prayer and select a location in front of you where you can maintain a steady look.
  • Relax and breathe 8-10 times before switching sides. Keep your core strong as well as shoulders relaxed, and also don’t lean into the standing leg.

Beginner’s Tip:

If you feel shaky in this posture, you can balance your back against a wall.

3. Triangle Pose (Trikonasana)

Triangle Pose is an exceptional standing posture for expanding the sides of the waist, loosening up the lungs, strengthening the legs, and toning the entire body. Triangle Position is a fundamental standing pose in many yoga techniques.

Trikonasana
Image credits: Pexels

How to do it:

  • Place your feet widely apart. Extend your right foot out to 90 degrees while maintaining your leg near to your torso. Place  your feet pushed on the ground with your weight evenly distributed on both feet.
  • Inhale deeply and exhale slowly. Extend your left arm towards the sky while resting your right hand on your knee, shin, or the ground outside your right foot.
  • Stay in this posture for 5-8 breaths, turning your attention up to the upper hand. Inhale while getting up, and then repeat on the opposing side.

Beginner’s Tip:

If you feel shaky in the position, support your back heel or the back of your body against a wall.

4. Downward-Facing Dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana)

Downward Dog is utilized in the majority of yoga practices and programs to stretch and strengthen the whole body. It’s usually one of the first yoga sequences for beginners in their first yoga sessions. It serves as a transitional pose and may also be used as a resting position.

Adho Mukha Svanasana
Image credits: Pexels

How to do it:

  • Get down on your hands as well as knees on the ground. Hands somewhat front of the shoulders, knees below the hips. Stretch your hands wide and push your index and middle fingers into your mat.
  • Breathe and lift your knees off the ground, elevating your buttocks toward the ceiling. Extend your legs as much as possible and softly push your heels on the floor.
  • Your head must be positioned between your arms, facing your legs, with your backs flat.
  • Inhale 5-10 deep breaths and then hold for 5-10 seconds.

Beginner’s Tip:

If you’re having trouble relaxing and expanding your shoulders in this pose, lift your hands off the ground and onto a pair of bricks or the bottom of a metal folding chair.

5. Upward-Facing Dog (Urdhva Mukha Svanasana)

Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, or upward facing dog position, is frequently done after adho mukha svanasana, or downward facing dog pose. It is a strong position that stimulates upper-body strength and provides an excellent stretch for the chest as well as abdomen.

Urdhva Mukha Svanasana
Image credits: Pexels

How to do it:

  • Lie down on the mat on your stomach. Extend your legs back, putting the tops of your toes on the mat. Bend your elbows and stretch your palms alongside your waist on the mat.
  • Breathe in and gently press your inner hands further into the mat. Extend your arms and elevate your chest as well as legs just a few inches off the mat at the same time.
  • To expand up your chest, draw your shoulders back, compress your shoulder blades, then raise your head towards the ceiling.

Beginner’s Tip:

This posture has a propensity to “hang” on the shoulders, which pulls them up towards the ears and puts strain on the neck. Actively move the shoulders apart from the ears by extending down along the back armpits and pushing the shoulder blades toward the buttocks. A block beneath each hand can also be used. Allow yourself to lower your knees to relieve low back strain.

Checkpoints Before Your Yoga Session For Beginners

Yoga can help you achieve a profound feeling of peace inside yourself and with the world around you. However, before you begin, it is critical to create the appropriate environment both inside and outdoors. Here are some checkpoints that you should consider before starting your yoga exercises for beginners:

1. Empty Your Stomach Before You Start

Yoga is more than simply an exercise; it is a method of improving the human energy system. If you wish to shift your energies upward, get rid of anything that isn’t the body. So be sure to conduct your yoga practice prior to when you eat (preferably before breakfast) and after you’ve emptied your bowels. In the same spirit, no food or water should be consumed while performing the yoga practice.

2. Take A Bath

Bathing is more than just washing your skin; once water comes into touch with your body, it also washes your interiority. Water that’s chilly or tepid opens the pores among skin cells, which is crucial for yoga because we need the body’s cells to be energized with a particular kind of energy when we practice.

3. Wear Comfortable and Loose-Fitting Clothes

As we’ve seen, yoga has a positive effect on the body’s energy system. Garments that are loose-fitting aid in this process. Clothes that are too tight will be uncomfortable on your body when your energy levels increase. An extremely loose-fitting fabric is the obvious choice.

4. Try To Consume Neem Or Turmeric Before Your Session

Niam and turmeric combined with mild honey water is an excellent technique to cleanse and dilate the cell structure so that it can absorb energy. Muscles become more flexible as a result of dilatation during sadhana. The system’s versatility allows you to gradually build it up to a more powerful state.

5. Recite An Invocation Right Before Your First Pose

As you prepare to practice yoga, an invocation brings forth your finest qualities. A common invocation phrase in the yogic culture is Sanskrit, an anglicized version that directly links sounds with shapes. Sounds are used to stimulate the human system in Nada Yoga, as well as sound yoga.

6. Find The Perfect Time For Your Session

Yoga practice may cause a lot of warmth or ushna in the body. If the temperature outdoors is high and the ushna increases over a certain degree, it will induce cellular damage. As a result, it is preferable to conduct your regular practice at cooler periods of the day. For example, morning yoga for beginners is often recommended by experts.

7. Find The Right Spot

When practising yoga for beginners at home, it is important to set aside a place. Whenever you practice yoga in the very same place every day, that space takes on a characteristic or energy that is favorable to your personal growth.

8. Light an Oil Lamp

Oil lamps offer light and an attractive ambience, but they also generate a pleasant energy atmosphere in your house. Lighting a lamp before doing yoga at home will undoubtedly improve your practice.

9. Keep A 3-ft Radius of Free Space

Yoga acknowledges the human body as a microcosm of the wider cosmic macrocosm. Yoga asana practice is about matching your system’s structure with cosmic structure. When such a strong process is in motion, there must be enough room for your energy to move. It is ideal to have a 3-foot radius of motionless space around you.

10. Keep All Distractions Aside

When you do yoga, you are attempting to direct your focus inward to the source of creation that exists inside you. When you wish to perform yoga at home, music or any other sound that draws your attention outward is a distraction. It’s also a good idea to keep your phone turned off or in silent mode. Keep this time exclusively for yourself!

FAQs

What is the best yoga for beginners?

Yoga comes in a variety of styles, including fast-paced vinyasa flow sessions, slower restorative practices, and even unusual alternatives like goat yoga. But don’t allow the abundance of options to overwhelm you. The correct class is determined by the level rather than the kind. It doesn’t concern what style you choose; taking a beginner class in any yoga style you want to try is a good place to start.”

Hatha yoga, according to Emily Harding, founder of The Yoga Yeh Co., allows novices to master the fundamentals of the poses while moving slowly and carefully.

How can I start doing yoga at home?

If you do yoga at home, you don’t need any specific equipment or pricey sweatpants to begin right away. Wear clothing that makes you feel good and doesn’t limit your range of movement. A yoga mat will provide padding and prevent your hands from sliding in positions such as Downward Facing Dog. A yoga block or two may be useful for specific postures, however most of the time you can substitute something else.

If you’re entirely new to yoga and don’t have an instructor, you could consider checking out courses on yoga for beginners online.

Can you lose weight doing yoga positions for beginners?

Although yoga is not typically thought of as an aerobic workout, certain kinds of yoga are more energetic than others. Yoga techniques that are active and vigorous help you burn far more calories. This may help in the prevention of weight gain. Particularly physical styles of yoga include Ashtanga, vinyasa, as well as power yoga.

Hot yoga studios often provide vinyasa and power yoga. These forms of yoga keep you moving practically constantly, which aids in calorie burn. Yoga can also help you build muscular tone and enhance your metabolism.

How often should a beginner do yoga?

Most studies show that even if you only practice yoga once per week, you will see a change. However, for a deeper impact, start practicing three to four times a week if possible, but don’t let excessive expectations prevent you from conducting shorter sessions. Doing anything for 10 or 20 minutes is preferable to doing nothing at all.

In a nutshell, do whatever you can when you can. Instead of concentrating on what you’re doing, concentrate on what you are doing and be pleased with it.

Does yoga hurt at first?

If you practice yoga at home without an instructor, you may first question if you’re performing the postures correctly. It’s important to remember from the start that our bodies as well as bone structures are all extremely diverse, so there’s not just one ‘correct’ way to execute a posture. It’s all about figuring out what works best for our individual bodies.

The most important thing to remember is that yoga is not supposed to hurt – whether you practice at home on your own or in a workshop with an instructor. You will most likely feel different sensations than you are accustomed to, and you might just feel your tensed muscles, but if you feel any sort of “warning” discomfort, like sharpness or pinching, pay attention to your body and carefully come out of the posture.

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