If going to a yoga studio for the first time gives you knots in your stomach, don’t worry, you can easily familiarize yourself with yoga at home before trying out a class. Starting a yoga practice doesn’t have to be an anxiety producing experience for yoga beginners. Quite the opposite! By doing a little research and preparation, you can start yoga at home quite comfortably.
First, it is a good idea to decide which yoga style is right for you. No need to feel overwhelmed or trapped by your decision. Your preferences may change as you continue to practice so let this be an experiment. Have fun with your research and bring as much information into starting your yoga practice at home as you’d like. As a beginner, you have a unique perspective into the world of yoga, so enjoy!
In order to do yoga at home safely and avoid injury, it is essential to prepare properly. Practicing yoga at home is a time to gain a gradual understanding of how your body moves and become familiar with yoga postures. As a yoga beginner it is important to approach your practice systematically. Whether you are an athlete or new to physical activity, yoga will move your body in unfamiliar ways so it is imperative to start your yoga practice at home gradually. If you want to learn more about the alignment of the body and ways to approach yoga from the perspective of your body’s anatomy, try Divine Alignment by Guruprem Singh Khalsa, now available as an e-book!
Next, it is very helpful to have the appropriate tools to begin yoga at home. Yoga beginners can feel mystified when looking at all the props used to support a yoga practice. How can you possibly know what you need? Making a few simple investments up front will help you stay safe while doing yoga at home and allow you to enjoy your practice more. While it is ideal to practice on a hard floor, don’t let carpet stop you. A kitchen floor or outside area can work beautifully too. Just be sure you have enough space around you to stretch out fully. Wearing comfortable clothing that allows for a full range of motion is very important. A yoga mat will keep you from slipping and is a great investment for yoga beginners. Having two yoga blocks allows you to extend your reach in postures where your hands don’t quite touch the floor. This lets you experience a posture fully without compromising your alignment and risking injury. A meditation cushion is not only for meditation! When sitting cross-legged on the floor, the knees should be at or below the level of the hips. Most yoga beginners knees are higher than the hips which creates a strain on the joints. Having a cushion will bring more ease into your seat allowing you to sit longer and they are fun home furnishings as well! Yoga blankets are great tools to allow the body to relax into certain postures by taking strain off of tight muscles. These blankets are a firm weave and give sturdy support unlike bedding blankets. They are excellent for staying warm during final relaxation too.
Now that you have some basic supplies for your home yoga practice, it’s time to get started. Many yoga practitioners, including beginners, forget about the most important tool of all, water! Being well hydrated before you start yoga is vital. Having a refillable water bottle lets you drink all you need and saves money over the disposable plastic bottles in the store. Ideally you won’t drink water during your yoga practice but only before and after. Yoga will build a purifying heat inside the body which is a good thing. As a yoga beginner, it is essential to know that this heat is a crucial part of the practice and drinking water during your yoga at home will only dampen this fire. Let it be!
There are many wonderful books to support you in your home yoga journey. Yoga books are key to building a solid foundation from which to grow. Kundalini Yoga – Sadhana Guidelines is a great book to start your Kundalini Yoga practice. Kriya: Yoga Sets, Meditations and Classic Kriyas offers an incredible wealth of practices you can do at home any time.This book goes deeper into the energetic effects of yoga and shows you a system of techniques that allow a home yoga practice to develop around your unique needs.
Yoga DVDs can be an engaging way to expand your yoga at home as well. As a yoga beginner, be sure to start with DVDs that are appropriate for your fitness level. Try Kundalini Yoga for Memory and Magnetism by Akasha, which will strengthen your brain, mind and energetic projection. Kundalini Yoga for Circulation and Detoxification by Gurmukh and Snatam Kaur provides an incredible workout for the abdominals while strengthening the immune system and inspiring you with a live music performance.
Speaking of music, having uplifting tunes to support your yoga at home can be quite helpful. You can listen to a variety of MP3 samples right here on Spirit Voyage to see what you enjoy. If you can’t decide, a collection of various artists like The Grace Within You: Live from Sat Nam Fest or Yoga Living Series: Rising Sun or any Kundalini Remix, a great collections of remixed Kundalini Mantras are a good place to start.
If you are ready to embark on a more in-depth journey, try The Fundamentals of Kundalini Yoga with 24 incredible master teachers.
Now you are truly set up for success in starting and building your practice of yoga at home. When you start to feel more comfortable, venture to your nearest yoga studio and try a class or two. There really is no comparison in having an experienced knowledgeable teacher help guide you in your yoga practice. Plus, since you’ve already experienced success with yoga at home, you will feel less like a beginner and more comfortable with the whole idea of yoga. Enjoy!