It’s the start of a new year, and we have all likely made a health and well being resolution. Yoga has become increasingly popular in the United States (and most countries worldwide), and many are considering yoga for overall wellness. Here are some things that will help you get started practicing yoga.
Life is very busy and finding time for something new can be difficult. If you want to try yoga, start by finding a studio close to where you live or work. If you belong to a health club, get a copy of their group fitness schedule. Most health clubs offer plenty of yoga classes. Secondly, consider your schedule and the time of day that you can dedicate 1 to 1 ½ hours to yoga and look at all of your class options for that time.
Most yoga studio’s and health clubs offer a variety of yoga styles and classes at convenient times throughout the day. Some of the more popular styles that you will see include Hatha, Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Restorative, Gentle, Bikram, Hot Yoga (not all hot yoga classes are the same). Make a point to try out as many styles as you can to find which is most suitable for you.
Now it’s time to go to class! Make the commitment and go with no expectations and an open mind. You will need a few things for class. First, wear comfortable clothing that stretches and wicks moisture (especially for a hot yoga class). You will also need a yoga mat, and depending on the class, maybe a yoga strap and a block. Most yoga studios and health clubs offer all of these for use in class at no charge. It is a good idea to own a yoga mat (for sanitary reasons) and a yoga mat bag to carry it in. You can find them online, in yoga studios, and at many major retail outlets around town. Plan to arrive 15 minutes early for class so that you can register and get settled. Find the teacher; let him/her know that you are new to yoga, and about any injuries or other special circumstances. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
For many, yoga will become a life long endeavor. Finding the right style, a convenient location and a good teacher that you trust and connect with are all very important. Having the right accessories becomes important as you become a more dedicated student. Give it at least a month at 2 to 3 classes a week before deciding if it is right for you.