Full (FREE) yoga class. Get better at Dancers Pose!!
Elise Gulan with Exercise TV. A 40 something minute routine.
I love Exercise TV. Appropriate for beginners!
…to new experiences, and I’ll try a lot of things at least once. When my coworker suggested on Thursday that we go down a couple of floors to check out the schedule for beginner’s sessions at the new yoga studio in our building, I was definitely psyched. I’ve only ever casually dabbled in yoga and…
I get a lot of submitted questions about how to prepare for a yoga class if you’re a 1st time yogi - a yogi virgin. So here are my suggestions. Most of it is just me talking … but the bolded points or sentences are my main suggestions to get you past that first yoga class.
Don’t eat a honking, huge meal beforehand. Generally we like to do yoga on an empty stomach. That’s not necessary for a 1st timer but I wouldnt come to class with a distended stomach either.
Generally, come a tiny bit early to fill out the paperwork. I never thought of that till this person mentioned it but its a good thing to do just so you have time to settle down. If the instructor is there, you might just mention, hey I’m new. You also wont have to worry about walking in on a class that’s already started. (Being “fashionably late” is actually one of my pet peeves. I think it sends a message, “hey, I dont give a shit about your time/this activity”. ”I’ll put 100% of my energy into something … but later, not now. I really need to fiddle around with this whisp of hair that’s not cooperating.” ”Circumstance controls my actions; I can’t help it there was traffic heading into the city at rush hour … who knew traffic happens at rush hour?!?” I’m working on this whole non-judgmental thing. It’s not working too well.) Also, if you’re on time, you get to chat with the other people that are on time and make friends!
During down dogs your shirt might slide up, so make sure you can tuck it in or wear something tighter that wont move if you go upside down.
Same thing with shorts. Guys (some gals), if your legs are up in the air, will they fall around your thighs and make you uncomfortable? Ladies, if you spread your legs, will you wonder “did I shave my bikini area”? This is why yogis wear lycra and tight stuff!
Wear something that lets you move (translation: keep the jeans/jorts at home).
- You might have to pay extra money for the mat if you dont have your own. I’m guessing $1-5 for a studio rental. Free to borrow for most group fitness classes. $20 for a new one from Walmart if the location doesnt have extra mats.
- If you’re a sweaty type, your hands might slip during down dog. Take your first class and see how it goes. If they do, just bring a small handtowel to future classes until you figure out if you want to go to more yoga classes and start investing in YogiToes or likewise. (Gaiam sells something similar at Target for maybe $20, okay $25). [sidenote: the only reason I’m mentioning this is bc it was my biggest frustration in earlier yoga classes. This is actually a non-issue for most human beings. I’m just a sweat-er that lives in the humidity.]
If you’re taking a bikram/hot yoga class, you will definitely need a towel (preferably something like a yogitoes) and water. I wouldnt wear cotton. And I would hydrate well an hour before class. Again, dont guzzle it right BEFORE class where you feel full. Start drinking [water] an hour beforehand. Drop into child’s pose whenever you want.
- Don’t be tempted to bring a Pilates mat! They tend to be thicker and foamier. These are quite hard to balance on and do crescents, etc.
That’s about it for the physical stuff (except for the cellphone thing). The rest is me just jib-jabbering.
Dont stress yourself out too much about a first time of doing something!
I tell my newbies that they are probably the hardest workers in a yoga class. And its true. Mainly because they dont know the most efficient way to do a pose. (egs, in crescent, most newbies will lean over that front leg. an experienced yogi has a torso that is upright, mula bandha, etc … which spreads your weight out to the back leg and can generally hold a crescent longer since they arent tiring out that front leg).
Also, you probably will do parts of the pose incorrectly. A good instructor will guide you if it looks like you’re going to twist a joint (your knee) or your lower back … but I let my newbies be if they have too wide of a stance or bent arms in their Warrior I.
Rome wasnt built in a day!
I know this sounds horrible but dont ask questions DURING a yoga class. Wait till after the class.
If you find yourself pissed off at the instructor or something, look into that! Why am I so angry? Or maybe you might find your body hit a particular pose and it just pisses you off. That’s quite normal, actually! Its amazing the tension that our body holds and how tightly it can be integrated with our emotions!
Repetition is key. Keep going to the class and eventually you’ll pick up what your instructor means by cobra and down dog. I teach beginner classes as well and if you explain this stuff every. single. time. then you really are teaching more of a technique class and not a coherent yoga class. I tend to break down one pose every now and then to the nitty gritty so people who are generally new to yoga but have been coming to my class can learn the specifics.
Some poses are just naturally harder or easier than others based on your body type and lengths of extremities.
If things are tight or you’re muscle bound and cant touch your toes, don’t judge yourself. Don’t judge yourself based on the progress of the rest of the class. Your journey, your body is completely different from theirs. If you’re unflexible, that is a result of the past. Right NOW in this yoga class you are creating a flexible person.
I go a little further and say “BE SELFISH” during your yoga classes; I dont concern myself with others, I’m focus on myself and try to create an internal practice even though I’m in a room full of people. Niki! Party of one! These other people just came because I’m so amazing! (Okay I added that last part).
Turn your cellphone on silent and enjoy! Your body lets you experience this whole earth with touch, breathe, sensation! Thank it! Love it!