How to start doing yoga
For those of you who are new to yoga. This is for you.
Are you ready to change your perspective by putting your hands and feet on the ground, drawing your navel in to your spine and pushing your bum up in the air? Are you ready to feel those amazing benefits that moving on the breath can do for you? That's great, because the first thing you need is motivation.
If you are ready to embark on the yoga adventure there are basically two alternatives. Either do some research in your local area for a yoga studio or begin a home practice.
If you decide to go for the studio option. There are a few things that I can recommend. In my experience it is very important to find a place in the nearby area. Then, even rainy days can't stop you from making it to class. Also make sure the place is clean. From your yoga mat you have a beautiful view of the world, and you don't want to be distracted by a dusty floor. A cosy yoga studio and you will actually look forward to spending time there. Attend a few different classes and try to find a teacher that you like, who inspires you and who you can relate to. One thing to look for is an instructor that feels authentic to you. With a voice that speaks to your body and teaches in a way that makes sense to you.
Once you have found a studio that you like, you need to decide what kind of membership you would like to get. When checking out a new studio I usually buy a single class. That way, I can decide whether I like the place. Sometimes, studios have introductory offers for new members. These are often very good deals. Take advantage of them. Remember, yoga studios are making their best to offer high-quality classes, keep prices affordable and still be able to pay their teachers.
Nontheless, signing up for a class or membership requires a financial commitment and maybe that's just not available to you right now. Don't worry my friend, a lot of people - myself included, began practising yoga at home. The benefits of establishing a yoga home practice are many. It is free, the time can be adapted to your personal schedule and it becomes your private moment. The only thing you need is a mat and a routine. Fortunately, you no longer have to dig out a tape from the back of the wardrobe, it has never been easier to find great practices online.
My favourite classes on youtube are Yoga with Adriene and my long time yoga friend Tara Stiles.
There are also great services out there such as Yogaglo and Yogobe (the latter is in Scandinavian languages). These services offer yoga with a lot of different teachers (some are world famous) and instruct any level class.
At my teacher training, one of the first things we were told was that even though we practiced every day in the training, it is as important to roll out the mat at home, just to sit on it, breath on it and be present - a moment every day. That is, if you are not in the mood for a teacher-led or rigorous practice, just do some simple breathing exercises and a few stretches on the mat.
Remember, whatever you do - showing up is what counts