For those that follow me on Instagram, I’m sure you’ve seen the change of things swaying towards yoga. Don’t worry, my travel pictures are coming – I’ve just been growing on my yoga journey for a while before I head off to South Korea. With the changes, have come new questions and most of them are now relating to yoga. I think I’m a pretty approachable person and I get SO happy when people open up to me about their concerns or fears. In regards to yoga, they’re all fearful of getting started! This really upsets me – but I get it, when you look at yoga from the outside in it can seem very intimidating and might I add, snobby.
So, if you’re thinking of getting into yoga – read these tips!
- Don’t get intimidated by Yogi Instagram stars. A yoga pose for a camera is VERY different to how a yoga class unfolds. I’ve had a couple yoga shoots and let me tell you – they are nothing like the peaceful experience that is a yoga class with an instructor. Doing a backbend variation on a rock with your hands aching so the photographer can get the best light is NOT what yoga is about – it just makes for a beautiful picture.
- Don’t go into a class blind, meet your instructor first. Think of picking your waxist, manicurist, doctor, therapist etc – you want to like the person who will be guiding you through this process. Not everyone is going to enjoy the same teaching styles and the instructors approach to their classes so it’s always recommended that you have a quick chat to them first or ask friends who go to the same classes. An instructor will never be EVERYONE’s cup of tea and that doesn’t make them ‘bad’, simply put – they’re just not for you.
- Try not to listen to Yoga Snobs in your friendship circles. There will be the talk of consciousness, being present, aligning your chakras, meditation, veganism because they don’t want to put anything murdered or harmed into their bodies, Eco-friendly menstrual cups (blog post coming soon on that one!), reading energies and so on. These are all amazing things BUT you don’t need to know a damn thing about any of these in order to do yoga. We all know an all-knowing friend who preaches about being enlightened and how it’s the way of life we should all live. Don’t let them intimidate you into not trying yoga for the first time because you aren’t ‘present’ or ‘enlightened’ enough. Some enlightened folk are wonderful and they help guide you through life, others just want to shove it in your face like religious cults and want to seem ‘above you’ – those are the snobs.
- Don’t be put off if you aren’t flexible. One of my favourite instructors always said, “For those cursed with flexibility and for those blessed with inflexibility” – yes, you read that right! Yoga isn’t only for the flexible, it’s actually harder if you’re super flexible because you then have to learn stability on top of everything else, so please don’t let your inflexibility put you off!
- Do not invest in expensive gear straight way. Most yoga studios have mats that you can hire for a small amount and I would definitely recommend going this route instead of buying a mat for your first class. If you’re rich, buy the entire section of Lorna Jane if you want, I’m not talking to you. For us normal folk, I remember hiring a mat for the first six months before investing in a VERY cheap mat to start off with and then slowly upgrading as the years went on. Same with clothing, comfortable gym pants or sweatpants are perfect for your first try and you won’t look out of place.
- Do not lie and say you have done yoga before if you haven’t. Instructors get super excited when they’re faced with a Yogi Virgin because they’re beyond passionate about their craft and won’t want to pass up the opportunity to introduce someone to the world of yoga. They’ll also slowly guide you through the class and not correct every pose you’re making because they’ll know you are trying it for the first time. What I’m saying is that 9 out of 10 times it will benefit you if you tell them you’re a newbie!
I could literally write about yoga all day… but I’ll leave you with those tips for now! If you wish to learn more about yoga and if you like these types of posts – please let me know so I can carry on writing them for you 🙂 For those wanting to try their first class but haven’t, try get to a class this week – you don’t know the happiness that awaits you!