As you enter your first yoga class, you are filled with fear and trepidation. The class is filled with women and men who look like they take yoga really seriously. They are clad from head to toe in Lululemon and their mats are top notch. There is a respectful silence in the room. You take a good look at yourself and at once wonder if you belong here. Before coming to this class, yoga frightened you. But once you’re here, yoga seems like even more of a nightmare.
If you can relate to the above, fret not! We’ve compiled a few do’s and don’ts for your first yoga class to help you settle in (almost) like a pro!
Do bring a towel. You will sweat quite a bit in yoga, and if you breathe properly, you’ll probably sweat even more! When you’re tired and sweating profusely in class, take a step back, wipe your sweat away and start again. You’ll feel as good as new.
Do take a seat at the front, especially if this is your first class! Leave your ego at the door and focus on why you are here. This is especially important if you learn by sight (as most people do). It can get quite hard to see (or hear for that matter) anything if you stand at the back.
Do focus on alignment. It’s not so much about reaching your toes or getting your leg behind your head. Yoga pays a lot of attention to alignment as it keeps your practice safe and helps you progress better. Ignoring alignment can be detrimental to your health and body and before you know it, you might find yourself on your way to the chiropractor.
Don’t be afraid to use props! If you need a block or a belt to feel comfortable in any pose, be sure to use them. They are there to help you get into correct alignment. Over time, and with regular practice, you will find that you no longer need them. But until then, it is always good to have a prop near you.
Don’t bring your cellphones into class. Even if your phone is on silent, the vibration and lights may disrupt yours and other people’s concentration. Think of yoga class as a good way to go through a technology detox. Trust us, you will feel better at the end of it!
Don’t be discouraged after your first class! You might feel overwhelmed after your first class. After all, it would probably have been a crash course in breathing and alignment. But don’t be discouraged. Try another class, and this time with an open mind. You might just be surprised at how much you’d come to enjoy it!