If there is anything that has taken over the world of fitness it is yoga. Everyone is doing yoga. Yoga even became the title of a major hit. Now that you know yoga is fascinating maybe you might be interested in knowing the first steps to take.
Pick a Yoga Type
A little research will be required on your part. Many yoga classes are out there, and you may be turned off if you pick one that does not suit your personality and state of physical fitness.
Take a few minutes to read this overview of yoga styles. For most beginners, a hatha or vinyasa class will be most appropriate, depending on whether you want a slow or fast-paced class. These are basic styles, and you can always try something fancier later.
Find a Class
Online resources will help you find a yoga class in your area. You can also check local alternative newspapers or wellness magazines for listings or search online for “yoga” and the name of your town.
Pick a studio that is convenient to your home or work so getting to class will be easy. Make sure you start with a basic level class. Many gyms also offer yoga classes; this is a good place to start if you already belong to a gym. Finding a good teacher will help you stick with it. If you don’t click with the first teacher you go to, keep trying until you find one you like.
Sourced from: https://www.verywell.com/how-to-start-doing-yoga-3566735
The next thing is determining the kind of yoga you should be doing. You see yoga is an ambiguous term because it is made up of different activities. There are so many yoga options that might run out of time trying to master all of them. The good thing about options is that everyone eventually finds a good fit.These are just some of the types of yoga.
It’s all about the basics in these slower moving classes that require you to hold each pose for a few breaths. In many studios, hatha classes are considered a gentler form of yoga. However, the Sanskrit term “hatha” actually refers to any yoga that teaches physical postures. “It’s a practice of the body, a physical practice that balances these two energies. So, in reality, it is all hatha yoga,” Vilella says.
Best for: Beginners. Because of its slower pace, hatha is a great class if you’re just starting your yoga practice.
Get your flow on in this dynamic practice that links movement and breath together in a dance-like way. In most classes, you won’t linger long in each pose and the pace can be quick, so be prepared for your heart rate to rise. Teachers will often pump music, matching the beats to the sequences of the poses.
Best for: HIIT lovers. Intense exercisers might enjoy Vinyasa because of its faster pace. Runners and endurance athletes are also drawn to Vinyasa class because of the continuous movement.
Here you’ll get nit-picky about precision and detail, as well as your body’s alignment in each pose. Props, from yoga blocks and blankets to straps or a ropes wall, will become your new best friend, helping you to work within a range of motion that is safe and effective. Unlike in Vinyasa, each posture is held for a period of time. If you’re new to Iyengar, even if you’ve practiced other types of yoga, it’s good to start with a level one class to familiarize yourself with the technique.
Best for: Detail-oriented yogis. If you like to geek out about anatomy, movement and form, you’ll love Iyengar — teachers share a wealth of information during class. Iyengar can also be practiced at any age and is great for those with injuries (though you should consult with a doctor first), Vilella notes.
The next thing is finding yourself a good yoga class and yogi. First and foremost the kind of class you seek should be one that teaches your style of yoga. How much time do you have in your hands? There are sessions that last for 45 minutes while there are those that last for 90 minutes. Which one you take depends on your daily schedule. You should also find out who will teach you, do research on their technique or ask around.
The major factors to consider when choosing the right yoga class for you
Of course, the style makes a huge difference, and there’s no ‘better or worse’ –it depends on your purpose. If you want to work your muscles, get warm, and sweat it out, and increase energy, power yoga or vinyasa might be good for you. If you want to chill, breathe, stretch and find some calm, perhaps yin yoga or restorative is a better bet. I recommend doing some research, taking some time to think about what you want to get out of your practice, and then make an educated choice about which style you choose. And why not try a few different styles to see what works for you!
Having completed many yoga classes with both fantastic teachers and those that made me go ‘meh’, I can say from experience that having an experienced teacher who is in it for more than the fitness aspect is a totally different experience than a class run by someone who is mostly about building muscles and improving flexibility. My favourite classes are always those that have some greater meaning or message built into them, whether that be in the form of a theme for the class, or just a few words that the teacher offers during savasana. Traditionally yoga is much more a spiritual practice than just physical poses, and teachers who offer a little bit of something for the psyche on top of teaching the physical movements are always my faves.
I’ve done classes that go for 45-50 minutes, like group fitness classes in gyms, and I’ve always found they don’t really allow enough time to do a proper stillness practice. Some have written about savasana (the corpse pose) being the most important asana (pose) in yoga and it’s certainly important from my perspective. I love the practice of it in the studio, of taking a moment to let your body consolidate what you’ve just gone through in the last hour or so, and just focusing on breathing. I also love taking that concept into the rest of your life – allowing time for processing, resting, and taking a breath before moving on to the next thing. In shorter classes, there is usually only a couple of minutes of stillness, which I reckon isn’t enough. My fave classes go for 75 – 90 minutes.