10 Tips for Beginning Yogi’s

Yoga benefits both body and soul, helping to manage stress, create balance and improve mood. There’s no expensive equipment to buy, and it can be practiced anywhere. These tips will help for a successful journey.

Respect the Trek

Eagerness is great, but like the smooth flow of poses and breathing yoga entails, the journey should be thoughtful. Patience and self-love are essential.

Gain Good Guidance

A good teacher is vital for success. They should put students at ease while properly teaching alignments. If in-person classes are unappealing, there are lots of free resources online.

Choose Comfy Clothing

Comfort is a must. Wear clothing that allows for movement without malfunction. There’s no need to run out and spend a ton of money. Students need attire that stretches without stress.

Temper Tummy Trouble

Bending and twisting on a full stomach is a bad idea. It’s better to wait 2-3 hours after meals to avoid discomfort. Drink lots of water throughout the day to help flush out toxins released during sessions.

Gradual Gains

A “no pain no gain” mentality has no place in yoga. True yoga gain can be measured by ease of position. Pushing a little bit past comfort will help progression but should never be painful.

Inhale, Exhale, Repeat

Breathing is essential. Inhale deep into the body, allowing the belly to expand. Use the exhale to move deeper into poses.

Say Cheese

A soft smile helps keep the body and mind on a positive plane. Much like the breath, it can also serve as a signal for strain.

Maintain Mindfulness

Stay in the present. Ignore others and their achievements. Notice feelings, both physical and mental. Accept the moment as it presents itself.

Winning Wind Down

Many classes end with the corpse pose, which involves lying flat on the floor and allowing every muscle to relax. Savor these few moments of total peace before racing off to the rest of the day.

Practice Makes Perfect

Quality, not quantity, matters most. It’s much better to incorporate small frequently rather than intermittent lengthy sessions. This will allow a more natural transition for the body.

Originally published

The Benefits of Yoga

The Eastern tradition of yoga is a time-tested way to boost physical, mental, and psychological health. In truth, however, the Eastern tradition doesn’t see the strict partition between the mind and body that the Western scientific paradigm does. 

Deep Breathing Relaxes the Body and Mind 

The Indian Ayurvedic tradition and Traditional Chinese Medicine sees the mind and body as providing feedback to one another in a more seamless fashion. The fact that breathing deeply can profoundly impact our mental states is ample evidence that there’s a feedback mechanism between the mind and body. 

Consider the fact that when people are very anxious their breathing constricts. Other people, or the otherwise anxious people at different times, experience a sense of calm when they’re breathing more deeply. It could be that breathing more deeply leads to the sense of calm, though, which is where yoga comes in. 

Yoga Might Lead to Weight Loss 

Yoga has been studied in connection with its ability to balance metabolism and control cravings. Both of which could lead to weight loss. 

Yoga Improves Flexibility and Muscle Strength 

During an initial yoga session, many people struggle to reach their toes from a standing position, let alone do a full backbend or adventurous headstand. That’s OK. Gradually over time, yoga can allow people to loosen their muscles yet improve their muscle strength at the same time. 

Yoga also reminds people that everything in the body is connected. Case in point, consider the fact that tightness in the hamstring area can flatten the lumbar spine and cause annoying back pain. If your muscles and all of the connective tissue connecting your muscles together is too tight, then you could experience poor posture, which itself is a risk factor for back pain. You don’t have to accept that. You have the choice to do yoga. 

Yoga Grounds People in the Present 

By helping people to focus on their breath and their bodies, yoga has the amazing ability to bring people back to the present and ground them. Remember that all of your stresses are predicated on the future in the sense that you’re worrying about something bad happening at some presumed future data. Yoga brings people back to the present.

Can Help Decrease Stress and Anxiety

Studies have shown that yoga helps decrease the secretion of cortisol in the body which can trigger stress and anxiety. Even though this is a heavily studied subject, it isn’t entirely clear how yoga is able to help reduce these symptoms. But it is believed that calming the mind is one of the biggest reasons why this helps reduce the amount of stress and anxiety people feel.

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© Anthony Karabon 2019