If you want to bring something new to your exercising routine and you thought of yoga, you should know that it’s a very beautiful practice that can bring you both physical and mental benefits. However, there are a few things you should know before starting to practice yoga.
Apart from choosing the right teacher, getting the right clothes so you can feel good and relaxed during your practice and getting a yoga mat that won’t slip, you should prepare yourself for yoga by opening your mind to this new experience.
Here’s a few tips in order to make this practice enjoyable and make the most out of it.
Approach yoga with an open mind
Allow your brain to feel both concentrated and aware at the same time. If you like or even practice meditation, you should approach a yoga practice with the same mindset as you approach meditation. Allow your body to observe the sensations felt while you move, breathe or stretch.
Notice how every stretch feels different with every breath you take and relax your way into it. Be aware of your belly moving as you breathe. Notice any change in your body as the practice goes on. Be aware of the feeling of contact between your body and a mat. Notice any feelings that might appear during the practice and let them pass by, just like you do in meditation.
Allow yourself to experience any feeling without pushing it away. It’s normal if you feel frustration if a pose doesn’t work out or if it hurts, just like it’s normal to feel pride or bliss after you finish a yoga practice.
Before your first practice, have no expectations or preconceptions about it. Yoga is such a complex practice – it isn’t just a nice way to relax or stretch.
Don’t decide in advance what yoga should be, but allow it to surprise you and let it be. Your body might be stiff or it might be flexible. This will change with time.
Your first class might seem never-ending and you might find it hard to concentrate or you might find that it’s actually pretty easy for you and you might feel blissful. Let the whole experience surprise you.
Just like any other activity, yoga is a practice
It’s a practice that requires consistency, commitment and discipline. Make sure you give 100% on the mat. Give yourself time, start small and build from there.
More than being a practice, a yoga class is something very personal. Every person will have their unique experience with yoga, so allow yourself to feel it and be committed to it.
A yoga practice requires your full attention, and it will reciprocate with the same attention and will give you powerful rewards.
Yoga will challenge you
You don’t have to have prior experience to practice yoga. Start small, gain your knowledge, get to know your body and grow. In yoga, there’s always room for improvement.
Being able to synchronize your breath with the movements of your body is not as easy as it may seem. Try difficult poses, even if at first you won’t succeed.
The beauty of yoga is that it has the ability to continuously challenge you to be better.
Your experience will be different than others’
Most people perceive yoga as an imitation of postures as seen on your teacher. Actually, yoga is a very personal experience. Every person who practices yoga will have its own unique experience with it.
It’s very important that you structure your practice in order to achieve your goals. For example, if a pose is too hard for you, instead of trying to imitate it perfectly and not managing to do so, try to do a modified version of it until you are ready for the next step.
One of the most important and beautiful things about yoga is versatility. Trust your intuition and your teacher’s advice and you will have a beautiful experience.
Always be thankful
Be thankful for choosing another step towards your well-being. Yoga has a multitude of benefits on both your physical and emotional well-being, it makes your body feel more flexible while easing your mind and your thoughts.
It is a discipline that reconnects your body and your mind and fuels you with new energy. The mental clarity you will obtain after a yoga practice is unique, and this will keep you going.
Be grateful that you have chosen to open your body and mind to this new practice and allowing yourself to be better.
All in all, if you are living a life that often leaves you feeling stressed out and tired, yoga is an excellent option for you. It’s highly recommended that you start small and build up from there.
Make sure your clothes are loose and allow you to move around. It’s okay to experiment different types of yoga before you find the one that works for you. Some yoga practices are more physical, while others are more spiritual.
Choose the one that works for you and continue to practice it. You got this!
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