If you’ve heard about the many benefits of yoga, but haven’t had the time to get yourself in a class, you can get started on your own with some basic yoga poses. Check out the poses below to learn about some of the most common yoga poses, as well as some other tools and resources you can use to learn more.
The Mountain pose is the opening pose in many yoga sessions and acts as an aid to improve posture, balance, and focus. Also known as Tadasana, tada meaning mountain and asana meaning pose, it is a foundational move that leads to other, more complex yoga poses.
● Stand up straight with your feet together.
● Let your arms hang at your sides with your palms turned outward.
● Keep your shoulders relaxed.
● Take a deep breath and lift both your arms straight up from your sides.
● Connect your palms together and point your fingers upward.
● After a moment, exhale and bring your arms back down to your side.
As you perform the movements of this pose, make sure your feet, knees, hips, and upper body are straight and aligned. Use this pose to help relieve sciatica and pain in the knees, thighs, and ankles.
Downward Facing Dog
Adho Mukha Svanasana, known as Downward Facing Dog, is a pose that simultaneously stretches the back and legs, while building strength in the arms and shoulders. It can be used as a transitional pose, a strength building pose, or a rest pose.
● Start on your hands and knees, with your wrists under your shoulders and knees under your hips.
● Walk your hands forward a few inches and spread your fingers wide.
● Press your palms into the mat.
● Slowly straighten your knees and push your hips toward the ceiling.
● As your body begins to take on an “A” shape, let your lower back straighten and relax.
● Bend your knees slightly and keep your feet hip-width apart.
● Breathe deeply while in this pose.
This pose can be used to energize your body, as it stretches the hamstrings, shoulders, calves, and lower back. It’s considered an inversion because your head is below your heart, but it’s not as strenuous as a headstand.
There are two Warrior poses, but the first is called Virabhadrasana, or Warrior 1. It’s a useful pose for testing balance, strengthening the legs and back, and developing coordination. When you focus on Warrior 1, it can increase your range of motion and flexibility.
● Begin with Mountain pose.
● Take a step forward with your left foot turned in slightly.
● Rotate your right foot out 90 degrees, so it’s facing away from your body.
● Keep your hips parallel.
● Press your back heel into the ground as you exhale and bend the front leg.
● Move your hands to your hips, and relax your shoulders.
● Extend your arms up over your head with your palms facing inward.
● Press your palms together and gently tilt your head up to look at them.
● Breath as you hold this pose.
To return to your neutral stance, return your right foot to its parallel orientation, and push off your left foot to bring it back under your hips. Reverse these steps to practice warrior pose on the other side.
Whether you choose to learn more about yoga through books, DVDs, online, or in class, there are a number of different methods to perform and hold each pose. As you practice your poses carefully consider any diagrams and instructions your training guide offers to ensure you get the maximum benefit of each pose and minimize risk of injury.
If you decide yoga is right for you, attending class will teach you longer yoga flow routines, as well as more complex versions of basic poses. You can take these routines and poses and practice them at home, or attend more classes to receive guidance from a certified instructor.
There aren’t any special tools that are mandatory for yoga practice, but generally, a thin mat or towel, stability blocks, exercise bands, and a blanket can help you modify certain poses and make them easier.
You can also benefit from inspired, post yoga treatments, like those available from YUNI Beauty, to help you maintain the calm mindset that yoga is known to engender in its practitioners.
Yoga for Beginners
Anyone can learn yoga—you just need a little bit of patience and dedication. Try these poses out today and discover how yoga can help you!