Whether you read about Jennifer Aniston crediting yoga for her “hotness” (yes, that really happened) or you heard about all the fun yoga and musical festivals that are sprouting up this summer, there’s no denying that yoga is becoming more and more popular across America. So if you’re thinking about walking into your first yoga class, here are a few tips.
1. Get familiar with the poses. Before you walk into your class, I’d definitely recommend getting familiar with the different poses so you won’t be constantly looking at the person in front of you or next to you as you move through class (which you might be doing anyway). Check out our yoga poses for beginner’s library so you become somewhat familiar with the different poses before you walk into class. It’ll definitely make you feel a bit more comfortable.
2. Shop around. There are many different styles of yoga – in some styles you’ll move more and in other styles you’ll hold poses for a longer period of time. But it’s pretty safe to say, that there’s a style (and a teacher), that will be just perfect for you. It might mean taking a number of classes from different teachers at different studios, but sooner or later you’ll find the right teacher and the right style, that is the perfect fit for you. But when you find it, you’ll know.
3. Gear. One of the great things about yoga is you don’t need a lot of gear. You just need some comfortable clothes and a mat. Most studios rent yoga mats but once you start going pretty regularly, you’re probably going to want your own. (And most studios don’t wash their mats with any frequency so that’s another reason to buy a mat). Another great thing about yoga mats is that many of them are made from eco-friendly or sustainable materials.
4. Yoga is what you make of it. The great thing about yoga is that it’s your own practice – everything from what poses you do (or don’t do), how fast or slow you go, or what your intention is – there’s only one person who makes the decision about all of this – you! As Ed and Deb Shapiro say, “Ultimately, yoga is about self-realization, true freedom, where the individual self merges into the universal self.” That sounds pretty good, right?
So if you’re ready to take the next step and head to yoga, then get familiar with the poses, shop around for styles and teachers, pick up a mat, and take your practice wherever you want it to go!