Yoga by a Beginner: Four Tips

In a perfect world I would get up early every morning, do a quick yoga session and start my day feeling energised, while I slowly slurp my green juice. In reality, I plan to do yoga four times a week but fail miserably half the time. There always seems to be something that is more important: laundry, work, scrolling through social media for hours on end. Still, I manage to work out at least once a week.

I initially found it difficult to motivate myself to do yoga on a regular basis, so thought I’d share some tips with my fellow busy-as-heck YZL readers. Unlike the professionals, who often make exercising seem like a breeze, I thought you guys might appreciate some tips from someone who sometimes prefers binge-watching Netflix series to working out.

Here are my top three tips to getting off your couch and into downward dog:

  1. Promise yourself a treat afterwards. As childish as it may sound, it really helps. After I’ve done my 20-minute vinyasa yoga workout, I reward myself with two episodes of my favourite series…and chocolate.
  2. Don’t hold yourself too rigorously to your workout schedule. It’s a bus and demanding world we live in, giving yourself another must-do task for the day is not going to make you want to roll out your yoga mat. If you’re not enjoying yourself, you won’t keep doing it week after week so give yourself a break; pushing your workout session to the next day is not the end of the world. (But try not to push it twice. Really, it doesn’t get easier.)
  3. Find a buddy. It’s much easier to cancel on yourself than it is to cancel on your friend, so try to find someone who wants to be your workout buddy.
  4. Pick a yoga style that fits your energy level. If you’re exhausted by the end of a workday, an hour of Bikram probably doesn’t sound that appealing. So choose a more mellow style instead, like Hatha. Whether you’re going to a yoga studio or you’re using YouTube, you can often choose the specific type of yoga you’d like to do; do some research into the different styles so you know which one fits your needs.

I hope these tips will help get you onto your yoga mat. If not today, then tomorrow. Namaste.

verhuel

Suzanne Verheul is currently completing an MA in English literature and publishing. Living in London, she has a passion for books, journalism, slow-fashion and vegetarianism.

Instagram: @suzanneverheul