I began my yoga practice in a studio. I remember it all – rented mat, hands on instructor, and nervous looks in my Mimi’s direction.
In hindsight, I’m happy I started that way (once I got over the extreme confusion and started recognizing the poses in Sanskrit LOL). I saw the overwhelming bliss on those faces first hand. Heard the heartfelt sighs as two dozen women descended into child’s pose. Felt the confidence that came from the instructor’s nod of approval as I pushed up into wheel pose.
I truly believe that all new yogis should begin their practice in a classroom – at least once. You truly see if yoga is for you. If it is, you see the things you can aspire to in this practice.
Year’s later, I’ve now transitioned to a home practice since it works better for my schedule. I won’t sugar coat it. This is a HUGE change at first. But with some adjustments and serious commitment, you can practice yoga at home like a pro!
Invest In The Equipment
Every serious yogi should have a few staple pieces of equipment whether they are practicing at home or in a studio. If you are committed to starting a home practice, make sure you invest in a quality mat, 2 yoga blocks, a bolster, strap, and blanket. For total beginners, definitely get creative with substitutes! I’ve used books in place of blocks, a throw pillow and blanket in lieu of a bolster and blanket, and a jump rope instead of a yoga strap.
However, I definitely suggest you think about the yoga mat. I found myself struggling so much to hold myself in poses, and thought I was either weak or ridiculously unbalanced. Turns out, I was trying to push my limits on a foundation incapable of supporting me. Your yoga mat should be grippy and sweat resistant.
I fell in love with Jade Harmony’s mats, and have been using mine for almost seven years now. It still looks like new!
Recreate The Ambiance
Dim the lights. Have a few candles flickering. Burn some paolo santo or your favorite incense. Play some soft, soothing music.
Certain elements of sight, and sound, and smell are manipulated to set you in the right frame of mind. To help you focus, relax, and let go.
These are important and often overlooked elements in a home yoga practice. Don’t just roll out your mat in the open space you have available. Set up your space with intention and meaning. Create a distinction in the space you are temporarily using for yoga. You’ll find yourself immersed in your practice just as if you walked into your favorite studio!
Schedule Your Class
Just as you’d sign up to attend class at your local studio at 6:15 each night, sign up for yourself. Commit to a time each day where you’ll show up to your mat and practice at home.No excuses. Well maybe some are justified, but still. You know what I'm getting at here Click To Tweet
Find Your Instruction
If you aren’t at such a level where you can create your own flow or remember those you’ve been guided through in a live class, find your way through apps, youtube videos, or paid online memberships. I’ve found this to be amazing, even after practicing for years!Right now, I'm obsessed with Rachel Brathen's oneOeight. Click To Tweet
It’s the best $15 / month you’ll spend on yourself. Plus, they offer the option to try it free for ten days. WOOO!!! (Click here for oneOeight.)