Equipment For Doing Yoga At Home
There are a few key items that you should make sure you have in your at-home yoga space before you begin.
A yoga mat is the most important piece of equipment you will need for your yoga practice. Most yoga mats are thin and have a strong grip to ensure you dont slip or slide while practicing.
When choosing your mat, opt for one that feels non-slippery and doesnt roll up while you are practicing.
Yoga blocks are a very helpful tool for assisting you when doing stretching poses or where you need extra stability such as the Half Moon Pose.
It can also help you reach the floor if you are not flexible enough to touch the floor in a forward fold. Yoga blocks come in multiple shapes and sizes, and can be made of foam, cork, or wood.
Similarly to a yoga block, yoga straps can make poses more challenging once you are more advanced. It can also assist in making poses less challenging if you don’t have the ability to stretch or bend far without the assistance of a strap.
You can use a yoga strap in many different ways, however it is commonly used in forward folds and other leg stretches.
The Benefits Of Practicing Yoga
The benefits of yoga are almost endless! Practicing yoga helps build healthy virtues and good values, such as discipline, honesty, devotion, self-inquiry, mindfulness, and non-attachment. Yoga empowers you to make conscious choices toward living a more healthy and fulfilling life. Yoga also helps you:
- Help heal common aches like back pain
- Increase happiness and well being and reduce depression
- Lose weight and change your body shape
- Improve and maintain the health of muscles, joints, and organs
- Prevent conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and auto-immune disorders
- Improve flexibility, strength, stamina, mobility, range of motion, and balance
Choose A Comfortable Place
It would be best to have a small, private room in your house for daily yoga practice. Over time, your practices will create positive vibrations in the room, thereby providing healing, strength, and comfort to you and others at home. Alternatively, you may choose a quiet space anywhere at home, which is large enough to roll out your yoga mat and where you know you are not likely to be disturbed for a while.
All you need to ensure is that your yoga space is clean, well-ventilated, and away from furniture or sharp objects.
You May Like: Can You Do Yoga After Botox
Yoga For Beginners: How To Start Practicing Yoga At Home
Affiliate Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Spirit Voyage may earn a small commission, at no additional cost to you, if you click through and make a purchase.
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 as youd 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 bodys anatomy, try Divine Alignment by Guru Prem Singh Khalsa!
How Much Time Do You Need
Once youve decided what your body and mind need from practice, the next thing to consider is time. As many a yoga teacher will say, no effort is ever wasted whether youve got 45 minutes or just five to spare. If youre following an online class, options range from 10-minute to 90-minute routines. If youre yoga-ing solo, set a timer for 10 minutes before you want to finish, so you know when to begin your closing sequence. Practice could even be determined by the time it takes for your coffee to brew or your bath to run. Flexible in every sense.
Also Check: What Type Of Yoga Burns The Most Calories
Repeat Sequence To Left Side
Repeat the same sequence you performed to the right side, this time performing it to the left:
- Downward dog split: Inhale, reach your left leg up
- Low lunge: Exhale, step your left foot forward
- Warrior I: Inhale, rotate your right heel down and rise to standing, reaching arms up
- Warrior II: Inhale, reach your left arm to the front of the room and your right arm back
- Peaceful warrior: Inhale, left your left arm up toward the ceiling and reach your right hand down the back of your right leg
- Plank: Exhale, bring hands to ground, step left foot back, hold
- Chaturanga: Lower your chest toward the floor
- Upward facing dog: Inhale, press tops of feet into the ground, reach chest forward and up as you extend your elbows
- Downward facing dog: Exhale, place balls of feet on the mat, press through palms and feet and reach hips toward the ceiling
Creating A Home Yoga Space
Similar to a home meditation space, your at-home yoga space should be in an area thats relatively quiet and free from distractions.
Of course, youll need more space than the simple corner that holds your meditation cushion. While a dedicated yoga space is ideal, it can be easy enough to move coffee tables aside, push furniture to the edge of the room, and clear out a temporary practice zone. Consider more than just the area of your yoga mat. At minimum, you should have 4 feet of extra space at the front, back and sides of your mat.
Outdoor yoga or porch yoga is lovely if youre blessed with nice weather, but remember that wind, bugs and outdoor noise can become distractions even on beautiful days. If its warm out, your black yoga mat will retain heat very quickly, and if the weather isnt ideal, your practice can suffer as your attention goes elsewhere.
Consider the floor, too. While a plush carpet under your mat could be nice for yoga nidra or a restorative yoga practice, it can be very destabilizing for a power yoga practice or any standing or balancing postures. Let your mat be the support you need, with a flat, stable surface below.
Read more:Explore the many benefits of yin yoga for body, mind and soul.
Investing in a home yoga mat, yoga blocks, straps or other props enhances your practice. If you dont have props specific to yoga, you can always use a belt in place of a strap, a large book in place of a block, or pillows in lieu of bolsters.
Don’t Miss: How Many Calories Do You Burn In Bikram Hot Yoga
What Are The Best Online Classes For Yoga At Home
If possible, go to a few studio classes or work with a teacher before starting a home practice this will help when it comes to executing the postures and breath work correctly. Yoga was invented way before the internet, so isnt really the ideal way to learn, says Vertue. That said, many great teachers have been self-taught through books and home practices, so its not imperative , it just might take a little longer.
As with studio classes, finding a teacher you connect with is key. There are a huge range of classes online experiment until you find what and who best suits you. YouTube is a great, free resource, but it can be difficult to weed out some of the bullshit, says Vertue. So, before committing to a yoga video, head to the teachers Instagram page or website and have a read of their content to check that a) theyre qualified, and b) that they emphasise correct form and execution. Remember, an online following does not reflect the quality of their information or teaching style. In addition to her YouTube channel, Vertue also has her own programme, The Vertue Method: a combination of yoga and weight training thats a great gateway for non-yogis, too.
In terms of mobility work, try Kinstretch classes to help support your home yoga practice by keeping your joints healthy enough to deal with the rigours of yoga . And if you want voice-guided routines to follow without looking at a visual throughout, try the Pocket Yoga or Yoga Studio apps.
Start With Five Minutes Five Poses Or Five Counts Of Breath Work
Theres no minimum required duration for practicing yoga, and every breath counts. Particularly if youre feeling nervous about getting started, try not to bite off more than you can chew. Instead of making a huge time commitment right off the bat, start by making small, sustainable commitments.
You can also start by committing to practicing just one pose and let things grow organically from there. Let your body tell you how much it wants to move. Even if youre used to 45-minute or hour-long workout or yoga classes, theres no need to commit to more than a 20-minute online class if thats what makes you feel good. As my sis Adriene Mishler says, Find what feels good.
Read Also: How To Do Yoga With Bad Wrists
Emotional Wellbeing Benefits Of Yoga
Dedicating time to your yoga practice is dedicating time to yourself. Coming to the mat every day will do wonders for your emotional wellbeing.
Yoga offers an opportunity to connect back to yourself and in a busy world with infinite distractions, this is becoming increasingly important. Regardless of your mood, energy levels, and skills, the practice will always create a space for you to show up just as you are, says Alana.
Just like meditation, as you step out of your mind and into your body, yoga will give you a sense of awareness that helps you better understand your thoughts and emotions.
The goal is not to push out negative thoughts or emotions, but rather to confront these emotions, sit with them and better understand them, says Rebecca, adding This, coupled with the endorphins that are produced during some of the stronger sequences, can leave you with an improved sense of self and many positive emotional gains.
Create A Beginning And An End
Whether you practice for 15 minutes or two hours, its important to have a beginning and an end to each session. Begin by getting quiet. Devote a few minuteseither while seated or while standing in Tadasana to bring your focus to your breath, to meditate, or to just feel the stillness. Pause from your busy day and come into the present moment. Likewise, finish your practice quietly by doing a few easy supine poseseither Supta Padangusthasana or a simple reclining twist , or a more restorative pose like Viparita Karani and then go into Savasana , lying on your back with your legs relaxed, your eyes closed, and your palms face up. Stay for at least five minutes and come out of it slowly, letting yourself ease back into the rest of your day.
You May Like: Power Yoga Calories Burned
Executing An Asana Practice
Seek Out Your Teachers
Pay attention to your favorite pose sequences during yoga classes and repeat them on your mat at home. Powers remembers going to her car after classes years ago and writing down interesting sequences she could explore in her own practice. Once youve got all or part of a sequence you like, try it at home the very next day.
Experiment with how long you hold a pose or how intensely you hold it: If you sense that you need a quiet, contemplative practice, do the sequence slowly and deeply. If you need to really move, hold poses for a shorter amount of time and repeat them. Add Sun Salutations at the beginning to get your blood pumping, or play with an inversion like Adho Mukha Vrksasana or Mayurasana in the middle of your practice. Remember, this is your time, so tinker in your own body as though you were a scientist in a lab.
If you want individual attention, Powers suggests scheduling a private session with your teacher. Think about what you want from your home practice: to balance your emotions and mental state? To work on a health condition? To improve certain poses? Ask for help developing sequences that cater to your needs. A private class can also just get you motivated.
Recommended Reading: Yoga For Bad Wrists
Downward Facing Dog To Down Dog Split
Verywell / Ben Goldstein
On your next exhale, tuck your toes and press through the balls of your feet and your palms as you lift your hips, reaching your glutes toward the ceiling. When your body forms an inverted “v,” relax your head and neck between your arms, press your heels toward the floor , draw your shoulders away from your ears, articulate your tailbone toward the ceiling, and engage your quadriceps. Pedal your feet, bending one knee, then the other to stretch each leg independently.
Stay here for five deep breaths.
On your next inhale, reach your right leg up toward the ceiling. Try to keep your hips square so your right hip doesn’t open toward the side of the room. You can also modify by skipping the split.
Is Yoga Right For You
Yoga is accessible for just about everyone.
If you have a medical condition or a recent injury, it can be challenging or dangerous to do certain types of yoga, specific poses, or breathing techniques. Usually, there are alternatives or modifications that can allow you to practice safely, and many common complaints have specific yoga therapy remedies. If you are recovering from an injury or are in poor health, we recommended consulting with a physician or other qualified health care professional before beginning yoga.
While you may feel some intensity in the belly of your muscles while in a yoga pose, you should never feel pain, especially in the joints. A sharp or intense pain is your bodys signal to tell you to stop, back off, and take it easy.
Read Also: Standing Split Yoga
How To Start Yoga At Home
Having a home yoga practice can seem a little overwhelming like maybe its something that only yogi influencers do because theyre already insanely flexible.But I promise you that anyone can have a daily yoga practice right in the comfort of their own homes.
What Ive noticed is that there are a few common questions that most people have when they first start their home practice so that I will answer those questions first, right here.
Your First Yoga Practice
We recommend that you start with a short and straightforward yoga session and slowly build up from there. Once you feel comfortable with a few basic beginner yoga postures, you can incorporate them into a sequence and continue to add more challenging poses. Make sure you learn and follow the essential components of a yoga practice: breathing, meditation, intention, asanas, and relaxation.
Also Check: How Many Calories Does An Hour Of Yoga Burn
Know That Every Moment You Spend Building A Home Yoga Practice Will Strengthen The Other Parts Of Your Life
Your home practice will make it much easier to experiment with other fitness practices because youll have gained the confidence that comes from connecting to your most true and important teacherthe one who resides inside of you.
For me, yoga is the only way to handle this type of crisis. No matter what other exercise program we choose, yoga fills in the gaps and helps us stay afloat when life seems too bananas for words.
The calm youre seeking already exists inside of you.
Learn Basic Yoga Poses
Once you feel ready for the physical side of your yoga practice, you can start to mindfully experiment with yoga poses for beginners.
There is no need to try to jump into the more complex poses or to try to be as bendy as the person next to you.
In fact, you can begin your practice right at home with free yoga videos.
Wherever you begin, whether in a local yoga studio or with an online yoga video, there are a few basics to start with.
Start with postures, or yoga asanas, such as downward-facing dog, child’s pose, and savasana.
In each pose, focus on pressing your hands or feet into the floor, lengthening your spine, and relaxing your hips. If you keep this in mind as you practice, you will be working with each pose exactly as even the most devoted practitioners do.
You May Like: How To Make A Yoga Mat Less Slippery