For the exercise-weary, or just plain lazy, yoga can seem like an attractive option. You hardly move, and it's still counts as exercising! However, new practitioners shouldn't be fooled by yoga's seemingly easygoing appearances. Yoga is a real workout. If you're serious about taking charge of your health, yoga can be a great introduction to getting to know your body better, strengthening your muscles, and building up muscle tone.
Dress Properly & Equip Yourself
If you're a total yoga newbie, ask your friends for help. Since yoga is such a popular sport, there's bound to be at least one or two friends who can introduce you to the basics, loan you equipment, and help you go shopping for the right clothes. When shopping for yoga workout clothes, opt for form-fitting pants and shirts that are comfortable, but won't get in the way. Athleta and Puma are two sports retailers that carry a wide variety of sportswear, from sports bras and tanks to yoga pants and sneakers. They also sell yoga mats and duffel bags, which are essential for your yoga classes.
Educate Yourself & Choose The Type Of Yoga You Want To Do
Not all yoga is the same. There's no end to the types of yoga out there, so chances are you'll be able to find something that fits you, your personality, and your lifestyle. The most popular type of yoga is called Hatha yoga, and is probably what you are most familiar with. Hatha yoga focuses on the balance of the mind and body, and is considered to be one of the "easier" types of yoga. Hatha yoga combines yoga postures with breathing and meditation to balance and relax the body.
Bikram yoga, also known as "hot" yoga, is known for the buckets of sweat it draws from the body. It combines 26 poses with a heated room of up to 100 degrees Fahrenheit. This can be one of the more challenging forms of yoga, but passionate adherents swear by its effectiveness for increased flexibility and weight loss.
Ashtanga yoga is known by its other name, "power" yoga. This form of yoga takes the practitioner through the same series of poses in a set order. The challenge is in the quickness of the changes in poses. You'll have to work hard to keep up, and true believers practice every day.
Decide When, Where, & How You Are Going To Practice Yoga
Nowadays, new yoga converts have a wide variety of options when it comes to learning yoga. You can practice with a book, or by watching yoga instructional videos online at home, which allows you to set your own pace, and embarrass only yourself if you mess up. You can find a local yoga class that teaches the type of yoga you're looking for. Many yoga studios will offer a free introductory class, so you can try them out before you commit to going on a regular basis.
Once you do decide on the when and where, you should really commit. The rewards of yoga can only come if you practice it on a sustained, regular basis. So what are you waiting for?
Kimberly Lau is a staff writer at BluePromoCode.