A Beginner's Guide to Doing Yoga at Home

Celebrity yoga expert Samiksha Shetty tells you what else you need besides a mat and the right attitude 

Yoga as we all know is a combination of physical and mental exercises that strengthens the body as well as the mind. In the lockdown, many took to doing yoga at home and easy reference were the several yoga videos available online. It’s true that yoga requires no equipment, you don't have to deal with people, spend any money, or even leave the house. However, there are certain things that you need to keep in mind as there are several myths surrounding yoga. Celebrity fitness instructor, Samiksha Shetty, says, “Asana, the physical practice aspect of yoga is unique because we connect the movement of the body and the fluctuations of the mind to the rhythm of our breath. Many people think that they need to be flexible to begin yoga, but that’s a little bit like thinking that you need to be a chef to attend a cooking class.”

samiksha shetty yoga expert

Samiksha Shetty

Samiksha suggests a few basic things that you need to pay attention to before beginning yoga at home. 

Assess your body

It is important to understand your body. Understand its strengths and limitations. Respect your limitations and work from there.  

Start by:

Analysing your breath, Strength on the basis of upper and lower body, Endurance levels and Flexibility range.

Understand and respect your physical restrictions/limitations.

Check your heart rate, blood pressure and body composition.

While all this might sound intimidating, taking a fitness assessment will only help you progress faster and will help you identify any underlining conditions, potential health risks and/or arears of injuries.

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What do you need? 

Yoga is typically performed barefoot on a sticky yoga mat with optional yoga props. The yoga movements and poses require clothes that can stretch and move freely with your body.

Set an intention 

A well-set intention is a clear way to kickstart the process of aligning your practice to your desire. When you set a clear intention for your practice it’s a bit like you’ve charted a path to achieve what you desire and intend. 

Where to Start?

Once you asses your body you will know where you stand. If you’re a complete beginner- you should start with a gentle practice until you have built up the strength and flexibility for more challenging sequences. If you’re a relatively fit and flexible person, you should be able to start a regular hatha yoga class. Once you get familiar with the basic postures, you can explore a vinyasa or flow class. Patience, commitment, repetition, and consistency are the keys to developing and progressing in your practice. Make sure you learn and follow the essential components of a yoga practice: breathing, meditation, intention, asanas, and relaxation. The best way to know if yoga is for you is to give it a try!

Move in all directions

If you create a practice incorporating asanas for all the directions a body moves, then you create a complete practice. Choose at least one pose for each direction—leaning side to side, forward and back, twisting, and turning upside down (which could be as simple as downward dog or a standing forward bend). Don’t forget to add balancing asanas ( like tree pose)to spice up your mix.

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Hydrate

Drinking fluids is essential to help cool down the body, prevents dry mouth while working out and otherwise and helps prevent dehydration. Waters helps clean and detoxify your body inside and out and also helps your muscle and joints work better.