Want to do something good for your mind and body? Been thinking about ways to get fit and tone your muscles? Yoga is the perfect exercise for these and so many other purposes.
There are 3 main types of exercise that the body needs to attain optimal fitness: cardiovascular (aerobic) exercise, strength training, and stretching exercises. Yoga fits into the third category, as it tones muscles, increases flexibility, and relieves stress.
For beginners, yoga poses, or asanas, can look quite intimidating, but there are a number of simple and painless poses made especially for the beginner that will help prepare you for the more complex ones. To get started, here are some tips about the basics of yoga:
- Begin slowly, practicing for 10-15 minutes per day and working your way up.
- Always do warm-ups before beginning.
- Try to hold absolutely still when in a pose?never strain to stretch further than is comfortable. Yoga should never, ever be painful.
- Start with basic, simple poses such as the Thunderbolt, the Child, the Bridge, the Windmill, and the Shoulder Shrug.
- Wear comfortable clothes that allow the skin to breathe.
- Never practice on a full stomach, when sick, or when nursing an injury.
Remember, yoga is not a competition of who can do the most intricate pose it's a relaxing exercise used to calm the mind and bring wellness to the body and spirit. Save the competition for the gym!