Always wanted to learn yoga but don't know where to start? Intimidated by people that can wrap themselves into a pretzel when you can barely touch your toes? You're not alone! Yoga might be intimidating at first, but once you get the hang of it, it becomes extremely relaxing, rewarding, and even fun! (And can we talk about how cute the clothes are??)
We've listed a few yoga poses here to get you started, and once you've mastered the basics, you'll quickly move into a more intermediate flow.
Hold each pose for 5 to 10 slow breaths and do the flow 2 times so you can alternate your front facing leg.
1. Downward Facing Dog
Did you even yoga if you didn't do a down dog? This one is great for the lower back and gives a nice hamstring stretch as well!
- Start on your hands and knees
- Your hands should be stacked under your shoulders and knees under your hips
- Lift your tailbone and press your butt up and back, drawing your hips toward the ceiling
- Do your best to straighten your legs and bring your heels to the floor
2. Mountain Pose
This one straightens your posture and gives an incredible upper back stretch. Different types of yoga call for different variations on where to place your hands and as you move through your practice you'll find which one works best for you.
- Start standing upright with your toes together and heels slightly apart.
- Engage your core and tuck your hips under
- Remember to relax your shoulders so you are not holding any tension
- Variation: Inhale and reach your arms overhead
- Variation: Put your hands in prayer position in front of your chest
- Variation: Rest your arms by your sides
- From mountain pose, bring either foot to the inner thigh of your opposite leg. Squeeze your foot and inner thigh together.
- The knee of your lifted leg should be turned out
- After you find your balance, place your hands in a prayer position
- Variation: grow your branches by extending your arms overhead
- Pro tip: Focus your gaze on a single, unmoving point a few feet in front of you to maintain your balance
4. Crescent Lunge/Warrior I
A wonderful hip opener and strength-builder, the Warrior Series can really test your focus and endurance. Just keep breathing and sink deeper into these stretches!
- Take a big step forward with your one foot in a staggered step/wide lunge position
- Bend your front knee and keep your back leg straight with a slight raise in your heel
- Square your hips toward the front.
- Extend your arms toward the ceiling by your ears and reach up
- Keep a strong stance, if you find you are shaking, make your lunge smaller
5. Warrior II
- From Warrior I, keep same foot placement
- Extend your arms so that they are parallel to the floor with your palms pointing towards the floor
- At the same time, twist your torso towards the inside of the lunge so that your front hip is facing toward the front of the room and your back hip is facing toward the back
- Your gaze should be over the front palm
- Starting from Warrior II, straighten your front leg
- Reach forward with your hand
- Pivot your torso forward and rotate it open to the side
- In a tik-tok motion, reach your front arm on the floor, hovering above it ever so slightly, and extend your top arm toward the ceiling
- If you cannot reach the floor, rest your front arm on your shin
- to ease into the pose, begin on all fours, with your knees under your hips and your palms flat under your shoulders
- Lift your knees off the floor and extend your legs out behind you
- Keep your booty down and in line with the rest of your body
- Engage your core & don't forget to breathe
8. Low Plank
- Starting from Plank Pose, slowly lower down by bending your elbows
- Keep them close to your body, brushing the sides of your lips
- Lower until your elbows are at 90 degrees
- This is typically part of a Vinyasa flow, followed by Upward-Facing Dog
9. Upward Facing Dog
- From Low Plank, lower your hips to the floor
- Flip your toes over so the tops of your feet are touching the floor
- Straighten your arms to pull your chest up and remember to engage your core
- Tilt your head to the ceiling and open your chest
- Try to hover your knees and chins above the floor
10. Corpse Pose/Savasana
- this pose is all about relaxation and letting your mind process what you did during your flow
- begin by laying on your back with your eyes closed
- Bring your arms to rest gently besides your body, slightly separated from your torso.
- Turn your palms to face upwards
- Relax your whole body, including your face
- Let your breathing occur naturally
- If your mind wanders, try to bring your attention back to your breath
- allow 5 to 10 minutes for this pose
- Pro Tip: This is a great time to practice meditating!
We hope you found these 10 yoga poses for beginners helpful! Feel free to comment any others you think we should include.