Let’s say you have researched what styles of yoga are offered in your city. You have read a bit about each of these traditional or contemporary schools, and according to your interests and inclinations, you find out where to go like hatha yoga teacher training in Rishikesh. You also have comfortable and uncomplicated clothes, you know what time and what day of the week is scheduled for the session for beginners, which is the most recommended if you have never practiced yoga before, because they offer demonstrations, and there is increased attention by the yoga teacher at slower pace, and there is a basic and introductory approach and overall it is a good place to learn calmly. Let’s see what’s next?
To prepare for your yoga class, I recommend reading a bit about what a yoga class is, or what may include in a yoga class, so you know what to expect and more or less what was expected to make students in each different practice. In this way, you will understand a little about what each one of the practices or methods incorporating yoga postures and sequences or even you will connect better with the mystical and transcendent aspect.
A yoga class, depending on the school, can vary in its essence and practices but usually it is essentially a form of physical yoga, sometimes with pranayama, meditation and others with power steering like kundalini. You can read a little about the positions, so you get familiar with them, the basic principles, the right way to practice and physical, mental and spiritual effects. Teachers often refer to it by its original name, so it may be useful to begin to learn their names in Sanskrit.
The first time can be somewhat rare because the exercises can be something you’ve never seen or knew existed, and it will be new experiences and feelings, and may be singing in a language you do not understand, which are usually also in Sanskrit and Gurmukhi, may be symbolic decoration or devotional images with incense, Hindu deities, Buddha figures, mantras, flowers, candles are rather spiritual, not doctrinaire or religious. There may also be some other paths of yoga in more traditional schools or other practices of yoga and countless manifestations of this ancient tradition.
But if you are prepared, you know some codes in schools and yoga centers to find out the spirit and what should be respected in places where it is practiced and you know a little about what yoga is, so that you will understand why these practices are conducted and what they can offer you.
Yoga is a noncompetitive, loving practice, where everyone forgets the outside world and finds himself/herself. It is a time where everyone is bringing attention to his/her body, raising awareness about every muscle and working places of physical being in which you may never think, activating certain parts, loosening others to do each pose correctly and, most importantly, to your mind which does not wander and is anchored in the present moment.
The beauty of yoga is the respect and gratitude towards the body, processes, limitations and gradual achievements. Never force your body and concentrate on doing your best while breathing properly, you connect with you, strengthen your body, you breathe, you become more flexible in body and mind and you balance your whole being. You feel how yoga is a world that extends its benefits to your life as well.
Prasarita Padottanasana (Wide-Legged Forward Bend)
- Standing, spread your legs as much as possible without losing balance or force yourself. Make sure your feet are parallel. Place your hands on your hips and activate leg muscles. Feel how you are well rooted with your feet on the ground.
- Now inhale deeply and while inhaling feel your spine is stretched up. With the exhale, bend forward from the hips, keeping your knees and thighs higher.
- Bring your hands to your feet and grab your ankles or take your index and middle fingers around the fingers of your feet (alternatively, you can use your hands for support on the floor under your shoulders or leave them on your thighs if you cannot go lower. Do not force yourself).
- Breathe and stretch your torso, keeping your legs straight and your long neck aligned with your spine. Elevate your abdominal muscles and pelvic floor for more support. Open the chest and widely breathe.
- Inhale and exhale slowly and consciously, trying to lose every time a little more, from the hip. Carry the weight to your feet. Keep the spine and legs straight but stretched a little deeper. Help yourself with breathing, mentally directing it to stretch. Bend your elbows up and on the chest a little more to the ground.
- Breathe five times. You can close your eyes for deeper inner work if you have enough balance. Bring back the hands on her hips.
Eka Pada Rajakapotasana (One-Legged King Pigeon Pose)
- It starts in the dog looking down. For this, kneel down and put your hands on the floor, horizontal, straight back. Your hands should be directly under your shoulders and your knees directly below your hips. Your fingers should be wide open, and point towards the front.
- Inhale and help yourself with your toes, lifting your hips and lift your knees off the ground. To open up the chest and shoulders, keep your posture on tiptoe and knees bent, thighs near your chest. The buttocks are high and stretch your spine. All your fingers and palms of your hands you offer a firm contact with the ground.
- Keeping your hips where they are, press the pubis against your legs, and take thighs back and stretch your legs, but be sure not overextend. Turn a little thighs inward. Always keep your back straight and arms open.
- Breathe deeply. In each breath, try to target the bones where we sat skyward, and make your spine straighter. Your spine should be straight and your chest and shoulders open.
- From here, raise your right leg, bending the knee and bring it forward. Support with your hands, shin parallel to the mat (or the opposite wall) or angle with your left hip, depending on your flexibility.
- Slide the left leg back, stretched and the upper thigh and shin against the floor. Your hips should be square forwarded. Tilt your torso forward, keeping the weight well distributed without leaning to the right. Breathe to help you let go, holding several breaths.
- Return to the dog looking down and switch sides. You can put a cushion under the right buttock to maintain good hips square forward.
To learn it all in detail, visit yoga teacher training Rishikesh.