“I’m not flexible enough for yoga” or “I don’t have the time to practice” are just two of the statements we’ve heard over and over again. And if you happen to keep relying on either excuse – or any of the twenty Yoga International list here – you aren’t alone. The fact is many people feel overwhelmed by yoga – even if they long to get into its groove. But by approaching it with small steps, you’ll be flowing in no time. So what do you do? Keep reading for our beginner’s guide on how to get started with yoga.
Getting started with yoga
The first step in getting started with yoga is to quite simply, make that first step. It’s the same with anything – you won’t know what you think about it until you try. And there are a few ways you can do this; we’ll walk you through some of our suggestions that will be sure to help you familiarise yourself with yoga.
Find yoga on YouTube:
Search a big name like Yoga with Adriene or simply type ‘yoga for beginners’. Both will take you to a whole realm of videos that answer all types of queries. Press play and just watch or try to follow along – the main aim here is to get a feel for yoga and the types of practice you prefer.
Read a yoga book or blog:
Although it’s not time spent on the mat, reading helpful resources can provide useful insight into yoga in quite some depth. Try Google searching a question you have and take time to absorb all the useful information that comes up. We may be biased, but our Yoga Studio Store blog is an obvious good place to start.
Yoga on social media:
Turning to social media when you’re trying to disconnect from the day to day and reconnect with your body may seem like an odd choice. However, it does have its uses. Some really great yogis make the most of their online platforms, sharing tips, tricks and videos to ease their audience into yoga for the first time. A quick and easy foot in the door, if you’re an avid TikTok user or Instagram scroller, this may be a good place to start for you.
Dive straight in and take a yoga class:
Even if you slip in at the back and observe for most of the hour, getting in the studio is a brilliant place to start. Every studio will accept even the newest of newbies with open arms. Take the leap and get stuck in – you’ll be sure to love it.
What will you need to practice yoga for the first time?
When you first begin yoga, you don’t need to worry about splashing out on lots of pro equipment. Yoga can be practised with the basics and then as you progress, you’ll find an upgrade on your kit will only benefit your flow later down the line. So what do you need to practice yoga?
This may sound obvious, but you’re going to want to get your hands on a good yoga mat. And this does take some thought. Whether you’re enjoying yoga in your living room or heading to a yoga class or studio, it’s commonplace to have your own mat. It will become your wellbeing sanctuary – but there’s a practical reason for having one too. A yoga mat ensures you don’t slip or lose your grip as you hold a pose, whilst providing some cushioning against a hard floor.
There is a huge range of yoga mats to choose from – it can be a little overwhelming at first. But it’s simple. Think about the type of material you would like your yoga mat to be made of, and then it’s down to size, thickness and looks. We have a handy yoga mat buying guide that may help you too.
Other than a yoga mat, you may want to get your hands on a couple of blocks to enhance your practice and a mat strap if you intend on heading off to a class. But take a read of our beginners guide to yoga equipment for a little more insight into this – there are lots of things to choose from.
What should you wear to practice yoga for the first time?
In short, you want yoga clothing that is comfortable, breathable and hard-wearing. You will want to choose yoga pants or leggings, as opposed to regular sports leggings, as these are a lot tougher and far more reliable. Another option is to choose capri pants or yoga shorts – both make for a cooler practice and can come in handy when the heat is turned up.
As for tops, they’ll vary from guys to gals. We recommend opting for a long length top over high waist pants for the greatest comfort as you move to different poses. Any brand will do here but we have some great options over at our store if you need a little inspiration.
What to do next
So you have the equipment you need, and you know what you’re wearing, but what do you do next? If you’re practising yoga at home, start with those YouTube videos we mentioned earlier. There are also a variety of subscription-based platforms that offer follow-along classes if you want to track your progress with an app – Fiit springs to mind here.
However, if practising yoga at home isn’t for you – perhaps you lack space or would benefit from that extra layer of guidance – think about booking yourself into a class. There are lots of different styles of yoga so make sure you read the class description before choosing and if you’re in doubt, ring the studio first – they’ll be happy to help.
What to expect from your first yoga class?
Your first yoga class may seem like a daunting thing, but it shouldn’t be. The yoga teachers are there to support you throughout your practice. Yoga etiquette, for the most part, is fairly self-explanatory—respect the teacher, respect your fellow students, and respect yourself and the practice. Little things, like showing up on time, putting your phone on silent, and staying in class until the end, make a big difference.
Practice makes perfect
Now you know how to get started with yoga we can guarantee, once you make that first step you won’t be able to stop. Practising yoga as part of your daily or weekly routine has so many benefits for the mind and body and you will want to continue to reap these benefits. Our advice? Keep going, one step at a time. Practice makes perfect.