Beginner Yoga Exercises or “Relaxation 101”
Love the idea yoga but are just not sure where to begin? Join the club! While yoga has increased in popularity over the years, its origin dates back centuries. There is so much to benefit from the practice of yoga in every aspect of life. Yoga is as much a mindset as it is a physical practice. But where do you begin? Relax, exhale and read on as we give you some tips on beginner yoga exercises.
If you’re a newbie yogi, read as much information as possible on the practice of yoga. Knowledge is power, and will only increase the benefits of your practice. These beginner yoga exercises will help you learn some basic aspects of Yoga that will give you a good foundation once you decide to begin the practice.
A basic yoga session includes opening poses, standing poses, salutations, shoulder and hip exercises, back and forward bends, inversions, twists, and finishing poses. It is important to check with your physician first before beginning a yoga practice, and also make certain the yoga instructor is certified by a reputable fitness organization. (AFAA, Les Mills, ACE are all good organizations) and that their certifications are current.
One of the first steps in these exercises (and the focus of this particular article) is learning how to relax your body and mind. Easier said than done! Once you enter the studio and place your mat on the ground, this becomes your sanctuary and time devoted just for you. No cell phones, no troubleshooting that problem at the office, no mental list making of school supplies or homework for the kids. You deserve an hour and half of simple solitude. Sometimes, if you’ve had a particularly stressful day, it helps to sit quietly before going into class and listening to ambient music just to prepare your mind to..relax! Take a few deep breaths, concentrating on the flow of the breath. Once inside class and positioned on your mat, inhale deeply and exhale deeply. Allow the stresses of the day to melt into the floor. Most classes begin with a brief meditation segment. Use this time to focus, breathe and get in the flow.
Attending beginning yoga exercises helps to become familiar with the five fundamental Principles of Yoga: proper relaxation, exercise, proper breathing, diet and meditation or positive thinking. When all of these principles are working in synch is when yoga is most beneficial. Seems easy, right? Not so much. Our minds are so cluttered and overscheduled it’s like we’re on constant “fast forward overdrive.” Especially in today’s technological age, everything we need is at the click of a button, push of an app, or just a keystroke away. Believe it or not, relaxation is a learned practice as much as the physical practice of yoga itself. This can’t be stressed enough. If your mind isn’t at rest, your body will be tense and tight and that defeats the entire purpose of yoga. Once you make a commitment to the practice, do your homework and read as much as you can as well as practice relaxation techniques. Only then will you be able to fully appreciate and understand the true meaning of yoga and what it can do for your mind, body and spirit. Breathe deeply..quiet your mind, and be ready to journey inward. Namaste.