Yoga

Beginner’s Guide to Yoga – 5 Easy Asanas to Start Today

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What is Yoga?

Yoga originated in India thousands of years ago. Today, yoga is practiced all over the world for the many benefits it has to offer. 

Yoga comprises movement, meditation, and breathing techniques. Yoga is about establishing a connecting mind, body, and spirit. More importantly, yoga differs from person to person. For some, yoga is about getting exercise; for some, it is about peace of mind. 

Benefits of Yoga

Yoga has endless benefits; practising yoga helps improve health and helps develop discipline. 

Following are the health benefits of yoga:

  • Keeps your mind and body – healthy and strong
  • Reduces stress and promotes relaxation
  • Helps you get a better night’s sleep
  • Boosts your immune system
  • Helps heal body pain
  • Supports general health and well-being
  • Helps with weight management
  • Improves flexibility, strength, and balance

Is Yoga Right For You?

Yoga is for everyone. No restrictions, no matter what age, weight, or profession. Yoga is also for those recovering from any medical condition or any recent injury. Yoga is a form of physical therapy, and it is known to aid recovery from injuries when practiced carefully. 

However, injury brings along certain restrictions concerning movement and yoga poses. To practice yoga safely, we recommend consulting with a teacher if you have any physical pain, injury or discomfort.

How often should you practice yoga?

You start to notice significant changes in your life if you practice yoga over 3 times a week. You can expect improved flexibility, strength, balance, and mental well-being. 

When is the best time to practice yoga?

Morning and early evening is the best time to practice yoga. Meditation and relaxation techniques can be performed before bed for a better night’s sleep. 

5 easy yoga poses for beginners

1. Tadasana – Mountain pose

How to do it:

Stand upright with your feet close or at a hip-width apart distance. Then, drawing your shoulders away, lift your head upright. 

Actively engage your thighs and draw your stomach in, lengthening the spine. Next, turn your palms facing your thighs and relax your jaws. Practice regular easy breathing. 

Benefits:

It might seem like regular standing, but it is the base for almost every yoga pose upon closer examination. The mountain pose promotes balance and engages your mind in the present moment.

2. Utkatasana – Chair pose

How to do it:

Start with the mountain pose. As you inhale, raise your arms until they join, spread your fingers apart, and reach up with your fingertips. Then, as you exhale, sit back and down as if sitting on a chair. 

As you go down, shift your weight towards your heels and stretch your spine. When inhaling, lift and lengthen your body through your arms. Sit deeper into the pose as you exhale. Breathe regularly as you practice Utkatasana

Benefits:

The chair pose strengthens your legs, shoulders, and back. This pose makes your thighs work hard and strengthen them too. 

3. Virabhadrasana II – Warrior II

How to do it:

Stand with your feet 3-4 feet apart with your right toes slightly pointing inwards, and your left foot turned to 90 degrees. Make sure your left heel and arch of your right foot are inline. Bend your left knee to a 90-degree angle and stretch your right leg back.

When inhaling, make your arms for a T along your shoulders. Next, spread out your fingers with your palms facing the floor. As you exhale, sink deeper into the stretch. 

Benefits:

Though the warrior pose might not sound like it, it helps calm and steady your mind. This pose also strengthens your legs and ankles. It also increases your stamina. 

4. Savasana – Corpse pose

How to do it: 

This asana is as simple as it sounds. Lie on your back facing up. Bring your feet apart, place your arms along your body, palms facing up. Close your eyes and relax your body and mind. 

Benefits:

Practicing Savasana every day relaxes your whole body and calms your mind. You feel refreshed after a few minutes of Savasana.  

5. Suryanamaskara

Suryanamaskar means salutations to the sun, an asana that comprises many poses. 

How to do it:

  1. Start with Tadasana (Mountain Pose). 

Stand straight, with feet together and arms along the side. Evenly distribute your weight on your feet. 

  1. Urdhva Hastasana (Upward Salute)

Slowly raise your arms over your head until they touch each other. 

  1. Uttanasana (Standing forward bend)

As you exhale, bend forward, trying to reach your toes with your fingers and chest reaching your thighs. Relax your neck and shoulders. 

  1. Ardha Uttanasana (Half standing forward bend)

Lift your chest to make it parallel to the floor as you inhale. Draw your shoulders away from your ear and lengthen your back. Keep your fingers on the floor. 

  1. Plank pose:

Get into the plank pose, aligning your body such that your shoulders are directly over your wrist and your feet hip-distance apart. 

  1. Chaturanga Dandasana (Four-Limbed Staff Pose)

Lower your body by bending your elbows, keeping your body parallel to the floor. Be careful; it is a challenging position to hold. 

  1. Urdhva Mukha Svanasana (Upward-Facing Dog Pose)

Draw your chest forward as you inhale with your arms stretching from shoulders to your wrist, with fingers comfortably spread out. Then, face upward and stretch your back and legs. 

  1. Adho Mukho Savasana (Downward facing dog)

As you exhale, lift your hips to form an arch with your hands stretching out from your shoulders to your wrists. Your palms facing downwards, fingers spread apart. 

  1. Anjaneyasana (Low Lunge)

Step your left foot forward just before you inhale to get into Anjaneyasana. Then, quickly bring the right foot forward next to your left. 

  1. Ardha Uttanasana (Half-standing forward bend)

As you inhale, lift your chest until you are half-standing forward bend position. 

  1. Uttanasna (Standing forward bend)

Exhale as you bend forward at your hips until you are upright with your hands over your head facing each other. 

  1. Urdhva Hastasana (Upward Salute)

Inhale as your arms reach up over your head, saluting the sun. 

  1. End with Tadasana (Mountain Pose)

Get into the very first pose that you did, breathing steadily. 

Benefits: 

Suryanamaskar promotes balance, improves blood circulation, digestion, and aids weight loss. In addition, this asana stretches your body and helps improve flexibility. 

Takeaway:

Yoga is known to improve your physical as well as mental health. Meditation, calmness, and peace of mind go hand in hand with yoga. You, too, can gain the many benefits of yoga by starting your day with just 30 minutes of basic yoga before you start your day. 

Try these simple yet beneficial yoga asanas and comment below any other poses that your love.