Get Up/ Shape Up

Introducing: Yoga

Hey guys! Yoga appears to be on everyone’s ‘to do’ lists whether you’re looking for a way to reconnect your mind, body and soul, or you just fancy trying something new to improve your health and give you some headspace. Everyone’s reasons for trying yoga are different, but no matter what you’re reason, yoga is a very healthy art to practise, not just for your body, but also your mind.

I am a beginner myself, and I started looking into Yoga to combat some of the issues I’m having with creating space in my life. There is so much out there and it can be confusing as to where you should start, so here are my top tips for anyone who wants to start practising yoga!

1. Start at a Yoga Class: This is really important as the instructor will guide you through the different asanas (poses) and teach you how to transition from one to the next. But I recommend doing some research and talking to a few yoga instructors about which course would be right for you, after reading up, I’d recommend starting with a low occupancy Vinyasa or Hatha course as this focuses on synchronising your breathing and movement, which is a good place to start!

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2. Yoga Equipment: Yoga is normally performed barefoot, and with loose, breathable/ flexible clothing. I’d suggest a pair of yoga pants, sports bra and a loose top would be enough for your first class. Many classes also offer either free or rental services for yoga equipment such as a mat, block, or stretching belts. You don’t need to buy all of the equipment when you first start as you’re only beginning to connect with Yoga, however make sure you invest in a mat to bring to your first class at least!

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3. Yoga is not a competition, so be gentle with yourself. Keep your mind centred on exactly what you’re doing and ignore the efforts of those around you; just because the girl next to you can get her ankle behind her head whilst balancing on her forearms doesn’t mean that she is your competition. You have no idea whether she’s been practising for 25 years, or has simply been blessed with insanely flexible hips! Focus on where you are and your mat in that moment.

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4. Remember Yoga is about yourself. Whether you’ve got yourself a DVD or joined a class of 50, it is not only acceptable, but fully expected that you are totally focused on yourself and the thoughts and emotions you are trying to master in that hour. Indulge in that, it doesn’t happen often!

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5. For many people Yoga is a journey not a one off experience. Remember that for the first few attempts you probably won’t be able to master many or even any of the asanas, and that’s okay! Take your time with it.

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6. Enjoy it. Yoga is not a religion (although many believe that it is) it’s considered a way of life that gives you a new perspective on things and gives you more space in your life.

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So there you have it! My top tips for complete beginners on where to get started and what to think about! For more tips and inspirational Yoga Poses, check out my pinterest board

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