First Time Beginning Yoga? Here are some Tips To Help You Transition Smoothly

I began practicing yoga about four months ago.  It was almost by accident because yoga was the last thing on my mind.  I was going to 24 Hour Fitness and decided to take a yoga class there.

I was immediately intrigued and decided I wanted to learn more about it.  I wanted to see what an actual yoga studio was like.  I signed up for a free trial a local yoga studio and right away I became addicted.

It felt good to stretch after sitting behind a desk for 8 hours.  I was surprised at the level of difficulty yoga is and assumed it would be easy.  I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Yoga is challenging both mentally and physically and you must learn to control your breathing.

After attending several sessions I realized I was very passionate about yoga.  I liked the meditation since I’m a deeply spiritual person.  I also find the human body very fascinating.  I’m amazed when I see the very intricate poses that can be achieved through practice and dedication.  Yoga is not about how flexible you are but it’s about what your body needs.

So this passion for yoga continues to burn and I very much would like to become a yoga instructor.  I went on google trying to find information on yoga teaching classes but was disappointed by how expensive it was at my local yoga studio’s.  I continued searching until I came across yogafit and luckily there was a level one class available in Houston.

I signed up and went to the class which was 8 hours on a Saturday and Sunday.  It was very educational but it was also difficult.  I really pushed my body to the limit but the experience is one I won’t forget.  I met some interesting people there, but most of the students were already personal trainers that were just looking to have a yoga certification under their belt.

There were a few that were either a yoga instructor or they were like me, wanting to get the 200 hr certification so we can teach in the future.I really want to move forward and continue and hopefully will have Level 2 completed in September.

So there are a few things I wish I would have done before I began yoga and I hope these pointers really help people that are interested.

  1. Drink Plenty of Water–  I know this one may sound like a no brainer but it’s very important to stay hydrated.  It also helps you gain flexibility.  I seriously regret drinking so much soda, coffee, and other caffeinated drinks which also cause dehydration and are not very good for you.  I completely cut soda and coffee out of my diet.  It wasn’t easy but I feel so much better now that I only drink water.
  2. Loosen Hamstrings/Hip Flexors–  Every human body is different and that’s what makes us special.  Some people will naturally be more flexible than others while some have to work very hard to achieve better flexibility.  I’m one of those people not gifted with acrobatic flexibility.  When I first began yoga, when I would be in the downward dog position the heels of my feet could not touch the mat, now after 4 months they can.  It definitely takes time and consistent practice.  Some things you can try is rolling your feet on a tennis ball.  This helps loosen your hamstrings and it’s also a nice foot massage.  There are also several yoga poses such as the lunge pose.  You can also purchase a yoga strap and practice lifting each leg with the strap.
  3. Eat Healthy-  I cut fast food out of my diet and won’t be looking back.  The amount of toxins we are putting in our bodies is sickening.  I don’t want to be a hypocrite because I admit I have enjoyed chowing down at Burger King and other places for many years but now that I’m on this yoga path, I just want to be healthy.  I also find that eating too heavily can make it difficult for me to practice and prefer light healthy meals.  I hope to one day become a vegetarian but I have a long road ahead.
  4. Music-  Music is therapy.  It really helps having soothing music playing if you to attend a yoga class or if you practice at home.  I have found a new love for Indian music.
  5. Deep Breathing–  You can practice inhaling through your nose and filling your lungs all the way up before slowly exhaling through your nose.  Breathing and yoga go hand and hand.  When I first started I was so worried about trying to perfect the poses that I wasn’t breathing!  When you breath properly your body will move in ways you could never have imagined.  The sanskrit word for breath is prana.  Our breath is a life force energy.
  6. Don’t Be Discouraged-  There isn’t a specific body type for yoga.  All sizes can practice and it also doesn’t matter how flexible you are.  One of the things I learned at the level one training with yoga fit is to let go of expectations, judgments, and competition.  It’s about what our bodies need.  Also, yoga is not just for women!  It actually began with all men (monks and priests).

I hope that I’m able to help anyone that’s interested.  I truly have fallen in love with yoga, so much that I started this blog!  Thank you for reading.  Namaste.

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