During these lockdowns, we are spending more time at home than ever before, so it's understandable that more people are finding ways to work out at home. Yoga is a form of exercise that can very easily be done at home and is incredibly beneficial to people who spend a lot of time sitting behind a computer at their desk all day. Yoga is a great way to get in tune with your body and to unwind and push yourself to become more flexible and stronger in a lower intensity way.
In this blog we want to help you reap the benefits of yoga at home, so we're giving you 5 top tips to start building a yoga practice yourself. No fancy equipment or experience needed!
1. Make it routine
Everybody is busy nowadays, and it's very easy to let other things become more important than moving your body, but a good yoga practice starts with a commitment of time and energy for yourself and your body. As with all things, it's easier to start small and build up. Set aside 10 minutes a day to do a quick yoga flow either at the start or end of your day and make it a habit. If you do something at the same time every day, it makes it easier to stick to it. We recommend doing a yoga flow either immediately after waking up to start your day feeling centered and grounded, or after you finish work for the day to wind down and start your time of relaxation. Start with 10 minutes a day and build up to 30 or even 60 minutes. Slow and easy does it!
2. Start with basics
Yoga is not all about difficult crow poses or headstands. The foundations are the most important. Start with tuning in to your breath and learning a simple sun salutation. This forms the basis of most yoga practices and will help you stay centered and focused on your breath as you continue to learn more in your yoga journey.
3. Learn from the pros
Teaching yourself does not mean you have to know everything. Nowadays, with social media and the ease of access to online resources, it is increasingly easy to learn anything from a professional online and for free. Search for simple beginner yoga flows on Youtube or Instagram and follow along with a professional yoga teacher to broaden your learning. You'll be a pro in no time!
4. Listen to your body
As described in our earlier blog: The Different Types of Yoga and Their Benefits, there are so many different types of yoga, and figuring out which type of yoga suits your body and your goals is an important first step to learning a type of yoga that is beneficial to you and your body.
As with any workout, make sure you listen to your body. There will be times in yoga where you are pushing your body to its limits of flexibility and strength, which might not always feel comfortable. When you start out with yoga, you will fall, you will feel uncomfortable and uncoordinated, but these are all signs that you are learning and pushing your body to grow and become stronger and more flexible. However, it is very important to find the line between discomfort and pain in your yoga practice. Make sure you know your body and what you are capable of, and stop immediately if you feel any pain. As soon as you feel any sort of pain (muscular or joint), slowly move out of the pose you are doing into a resting pose such as child pose.
5. Get the right equipment
The most important piece of equipment in your yoga practice is undoubtedly a yoga mat. There are many different materials and thicknesses of yoga mats to choose from. Luckily, we have written detailed blogs on how to find the right thickness yoga mat and how to find the right yoga mat material.
As you get more advanced in your yoga practice, other materials such a yoga blocks, bolster pillows and yoga straps can help you deepen certain poses and stretches.
We hope this blog has given you some hand holds on how to best start your own yoga journey. Nowadays it's easier than ever to teach yourself with the unlimited amount of information available online, so take advantage of it! Starting your own yoga practice takes time, effort and energy just as most things do. It won't always be easy, but once you start reaping the benefits of your practice and feeling better in your body, it will all be worth it!