The most common question I get is how to start doing yoga. I often respond by saying everyone starts as a beginner by first going to a yoga class to try it out. Which is true, but over time, I started to realize that this answer may be a bit oversimplified.
Not everyone lives in a major city like NYC and has hundreds of yoga studios to choose from. However, the beautiful thing about yoga is that you don’t need much to start and it can be done anytime, anywhere. So don’t worry if you are curious or new to yoga, these tips will help you figure out where to start.
All of the impressive content that you may see on Instagram may have you feeling that you need to have a background in dance or contortion in order to go to your first yoga class. As inspiring as that kind of content can be, it can also be super intimidating. My biggest piece of advice when starting yoga is to come with an open mind. I know this is easier said than done, but the key is to not worry about what you have seen others do and start to believe that you aren’t good enough. Those kind of thoughts won’t serve you in life or in your yoga journey.
Try to search for any studios local to you. Studios are a great way to start your yoga journey. As they offer experienced teachers, since it is highly recommended to practice with a teacher present, especially when you are just getting started. Studios also often cultivate a sense of community, so it is a great way to meet and share experiences with others. However, going to studios costs money, which brings me to my next point.
Getting started with yoga can be a financial commitment. Depending on where you live, a single class can cost anywhere from $10 to $35. So don’t be afraid to ask for those new student specials! That way you can save some money while trying something new.
Don’t be disappointed if the first yoga studio you go to doesn’t vibe with you. Just because it may be the first one you visited doesn’t mean you only have to practice there. Hop around the different studios, practice with different instructors, try different styles until you find something that resonates with you!
No studio local to you? No problem! There are so many beginner resources online with amazing teachers, whether it is on YouTube (Yoga with Adriene is a fantastic source with hundreds of videos) or by using streaming programs like Alo Moves and Asana Rebel. That way you can #yogaeverywhere at anytime!
This might require a bit more research, but trust me they’re out there! Donation classes are a great way to do yoga on a budget. Often the organizers just request that you pay what you can. DoYogaWithMe is also a great source for a lot of free and donation based content!
When starting anything new, it can be challenging at first — even with yoga. So don’t put too much pressure on yourself by creating expectations on where you “should” be in your practice. There is going to be a learning curve. You will be doing movements that your body may not be accustomed to. And there will be times you won’t feel comfortable both physically and mentally. Just try to refrain from judging yourself as you start this new journey. Instead, accept where you are so you can make more space for learning.
Hopefully these tips are helpful to you! Remember there is no right way or place to start practicing yoga, so just do what works and feels good for you!