You recently found yourself wanting to get into yoga but quite unsure where to start. There’s an abundance of studios, many different styles of yoga to choose from and it honestly can seem overwhelming at the start. If you’re anything like me, then you probably prefer to do research upon research and then seemingly never feel prepared enough to start (hi procrastination, how are you?) Well lucky for you once you start yoga you have officially started your yoga practice.
Find where you want to practice
You have two options here:
Going to a studio might seem super overwhelming and if that doesn’t feel like a good fit for you at this moment, that’s totally ok. There are MANY yoga instructors on youtube offering a wide range of styles and lengths. Pick a spot/room in your home that’s going to be your yoga spot. This space should seem calming, have a decent amount of space, and most importantly, it’s a spot where you could be uninterrupted.
If going to a studio for your first class seems like a better fit than at home, then I would start by researching some studios in your area. Decide how far you are willing to drive to make sure you’re covering all studios within that range. Obviously reviews are important, but what Sally prefers for her class might be different than Bill. Look at the studio’s website to see the class schedule, styles of yoga offered, temperature of the room (if heated), variation in class length, and most importantly pricing. What packages or memberships do they offer? Most studios offer a free class, free week or 2 weeks for a heavily discounted price to get you in. TRY THEM ALL. One studio might not work for you and you’re gonna think yoga is the worst thing and another studio might have you feeling like floating on cloud 9.
OK YAY we know where you’re practicing. Onto the yummy stuff.
To start a yoga practice it only takes a few items. Exactly what you’ll need are:
✩yoga mat : if at home, maybe you just practice on carpet, that works too
✩water: always water
✩yoga block and strap: tiny support systems
Also nice additions:
✩Yoga towel: absolutely not needed. But if the mat isnt grippy then this can be nice to have so you’re not slipping around
✩Cute outfit: totally unnecessary but i don’t know, I like an excuse to buy new activewear.
Once you have everything you need for a good class it makes it easier to keep showing up on your mat. Let’s talk blocks and yoga straps for a minute. These are amazing tools to help you deepen your practice. Sometimes I feel as if blocks get this negative wrap, signaling that the practitioner is weak. NO. Blocks are amazing for meeting you where you’re at. Especially in balancing posture or twisting asanas. They literally bring the ground closer to you. These will help you have proper alignment, so you don’t strain other muscles and activate the right ones. The yoga straps, help you lengthen. It will help you get closer to a deeper form of a posture even if your muscles are not quite there yet.
Find your WHY
I’ll be honest.. my yoga practice has been very inconsistent. My first year and a half after my first class, I probably took 10 classes. I found that when I went to class, I enjoyed it but could never actually bring myself to go. Then I found a yoga instructor I really liked. We clicked energy wise, I liked her sequences, her music and it made me want to show up on my mat. Because of her, going twice a week was no longer such a challenge, it was what I needed. When quarantine hit, I stopped practicing as studios closed and a basement is never warm when it is 40 degrees outside when you are used to practicing in 98 degree temps. BUT my WHY is why I got back on my mat. It took months, but I knew I needed it. I knew yoga brought me peace and calmness for my mental health and without it, I didn’t feel as good.
It’s funny to share what my why for starting yoga was now that I’m such a big yogi. My original reason for starting was I wanted to get into my splits. I would see these cool photos on instagram and Pinterest of girls doing splits and balancing on their hands and I had wanted that too. So I decided I was going to start practicing yoga. Now that didn’t keep me there as my practice was virtually non existent, but as I found the instructor I liked, I learned my real “why” for keeping my yoga practice was for my mental health.
Find your why. Your reason for showing up on your mat and starting a yoga practice. Whatever it is, that’s amazing. It doesn’t mean it will be the same why you might have in 3 months or 3 years, or maybe you will. Who knows. But make sure you know why you want yoga in your life.
Yoga Practice Secret Tip:
*to have a yoga practice, you must practice consistently. I am not saying that you have to go to yoga every day to be consistent. You could practice yoga once a week and that is consistency. That is a yoga practice. So go show up for yourself*
When we decide we want to start something new it can be scary, but when we prepare ourselves and find the joy in it, the task can become a favorite. The same goes for yoga. Before can seem so daunting but know that when you step onto your mat, you’re exactly where you need to be. Whether you practice once a week or everyday twice a day, that is your practice so honor it.