Beginning to begin, a newbies guide to yoga….
Beginning a yoga journey can seem daunting at first. Ashtanga? Hatha? Vinyasa? What do these words even mean? You were only worried about not being able to touch your toes to start with, and now even the timetable looks challenging to decipher! The good news is yoga is for all shapes, sizes and ages and it is never too late to start. In this post, we are going to uncover a few ‘yoga terms’ and help you find the perfect class for you.
The benefits of yoga are endless - stress reducing, strengthening, toning, flexibility increasing - the list really does go on. Yet sometimes it can be hard to make that first step. If you at all feel like joining a yoga studio is daunting or overwhelming, we totally get where you are coming from; we were all there once!
That’s why we always suggest our New to Yoga courses as a great place to start. Not only are these a great place to get to grips with what a yoga class entails, it’s also held in a really supportive, safe space, with everyone joining a newbie to the practice too. Over the course of 4 weeks, you’ll be introduced to the basics of yoga, different breathing techniques and a range of styles that you can later explore on our schedule after the course! We have two ‘New to Yoga Beginners Courses’ running every month - you can find all the booking details on our website here.
Once you have explored the fundamentals of yoga, we hope you will feel more prepared and confident to join one of our classes. Here’s a lil breakdown of the different styles if this is where you’re at:
A hatha class is deemed one of the more accessible starting styles. This will typically involve a set or series of poses (asanas) alongside breathing techniques. In general hatha yoga is practised more slowly and with more static postures making it an easier entry than a vinyasa flow class.
Vinyasa classes encompass a flowing series of postures linked together, so if you are looking for something faster paced already, then do come along. There are lots of different focuses on our schedule - grounding, energise + release, dynamic heated - so plenty to explore.
If it is relaxation, deep rest or a more restorative session you are looking for then our gentle flow or restorative yoga classes might be most suitable for you. These practices can be particularly beneficial if you are feeling over exhausted, burnt out or in need of slowing down.
Strength + Conditioning/Power
If however you are looking to strengthen your core, tone up and get your heart pumping, then strength and conditioning or power yoga might be your jam. Even in our stronger classes, you are encouraged to take things at your own pace, always, so there is always the option to take a childs pose or rest where needed!
And just a final note, yoga is not about flexibility! This is one of the common things we hear from newbies - “I’m not flexible enough for yoga”. Something my teacher used to say to me was, “saying you are too inflexible for yoga is like saying you are too dirty to have a bath!”
Most yoga practices strike a balance between strength building and flexibility enhancing. A good teacher will offer many modifications, alternatives and variations throughout a class so that everyone can benefit from the session. Can’t touch your toes? Try bending your knees a lot. Still can’t reach? Use a block to bring the floor to you. There are usually work arounds for most things, and part of the beauty of the practice is that you are encouraged to begin to listen to your body and to its needs. Many students find that after a month of regular classes the body begins to open up quickly, and suddenly balancing on one leg for 60 seconds feels do-able! :)
If you are still feeling confused feel free to pop into the studio and have a chat with us! We were all once a newbie to yoga and can talk you through our timetable and where might be the best place to start. We look forward to seeing you soon!