2009. At that time I heard about Yoga for the first time in Brazil. Although It was a huge trend worldwide, I could not find easily information about it. Much less an affordable class near my town. To dive into searching about it in books was the only choice available. And I did it.
Throughout the years, I bought a couple of yoga’s book, watched thousand of Youtube videos, and articles to guide me in my yoga practice. I did a lots of mistakes: Yes. Did I regret it? No! As a Japanese proverb says, ” A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
Last year, after practicing by myself for so long, I finally went to my first yoga class ever. It was exactly what I was needing to progress in my practice. Although not having a teacher is not an excuse to learn yoga, it will help you tremendously!
Looking back at what I’ve passed through, from the moment I heard the first very time about yoga to the present moment, where I have a consistent yoga practice, I wish I could have received some advice. There are a couple of things you should keep on your mind to build a health and consistent yoga practice. Let’s check it out.
1- Read Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
The Yoga Sutras, written by Patanjali, are a guide for every ordinary person to reach its full potential as a limitless being. It provides a rich amount of recommendations, techniques, and tools to be applied in every day life.These Sutras are primordial to progress and understand what yoga is really about.
This book contains all the knowledge, and wisdom that you need to know. It is 4,000 years old, but still contains the teachings in its purest form. I can not stress enough how it is essential to not only read it, but follow its instructions.
2- Take at least one month of yoga class
“Be careful with this posture, because it puts pressure on your lower back,” said my yoga teacher in my first class. Before I even warned her that I had scoliosis, she figured out. She corrected myself, explained my body’s alignment, and did modifications in some postures to me.
This is why it is important to take some classes with a professional before practicing alone. Other alternative available, is to buy yoga dvds for beginners.
It is unlikely that you will get an injury by not doing an asana perfectly for one week, but it will become one injury after repeating the same mistakes over and over again.
3- Do not focus on your stretching level
“Yoga is an internal practice. The rest is a circus”, said Sri Pattabi Jois.
Asanas are not the purpose of yoga. Asanas are one of the means to Self-Realization in this ancient system. As Yoga acknowledge you as a whole being, all your aspects will be part of the practice. Your senses, your body, your mind, your breathing, your relationships. But the purpose is none of them. It is just Yoga.
In order to be able to sit in meditation with comfort, you must have a flexible, stable, and health body. Otherwise, your body will scream of pain! And that is why we practice asanas, so the body is not an obstacle in our practice. Then, we can unveil what we truly are, and always have been.
4- Buy a good yoga mat
Might the problem is not you, but your mat! You can have a hard time in holding postures and focusing in the breathing, if you are feeling pain and discomfort. As a beginner, you will not need a fancy and expensive yoga mat. You just need a great surface where you can feel comfortable enough to have a mindful practice.
Although every corner sells a mat, most of time they are low in quality and made with toxic substances. It is important, therefore, to do a researching of trust yoga mats available on the marketing.
This website provides reviews of the yoga mats available on the market. It will definitely help you to find the the best yoga mat for you.
5- Practice Yoga everywhere
Your practice does not end 1 hour on your mat. Your practice last the others 23 hours as well.
You are practicing when you are listening everyone carefully, as precious teachers; when you help someone needed by asking nothing in return; when you watch the sunset and feel grateful for your life; when you embrace your pain and take care of it, instead of pushing it away.
During the entire day we will be committed to alight our thoughts, speech, and actions to the benefit of others. Therefore, we will be practicing yoga everywhere, every time.