Which Yoga Should I Try?

Hello potential 2013 Yogis.

I remember when I was in your position; hating the thought of boring yoga in a hot, sweaty, gross room full of randoms- or even worse- people you know.

I’ve sworn off yoga in the past several times. Jumping jacks in a 98 degree room? An hour of stretching when I could be blasting fat on a treadmill or in a bootcamp? F*&K that!

But now I practice as often as possible and I vary my practice so I a. never get bored and b. it can keep working it’s magic.

Since doing this on the reg (3-5 times a week), I’ve lost weight, become more mellow, gained flexibility and strength and made my figure more *lady-like*. Plus  it’s a lot easier to wake up at 5:15am in the freezing cold when you know that you’re entering a warm room and doing 10 mins of warm up movements before any real work….unlike a bright room and blaring music for boot camp at a gym.

Now I do yoga wherever I can, this past weekend I took an amazing power yoga class at YogaHop in Pasadena. Entering a new studio is intimidating as hell, even after two years of practicing- but Jonathan taught me tools that I’ll use the rest of my practice.

So here is my guide to starting off with Yoga. Hell…if you’re like me…it just may change your life.

  • Yoga is a lot like *Simon Says* or *Follow The Leader*, the instructor will call out a pose and everyone around you will do it, then the more advanced students will expand on the move. If you are like I was when I started and had no clue what was going on- no worries. Yoga is slow and it’s easy to follow the people around you- plus the instructor will come “fix” your posture.
  • Go early, 6am if possible. Those classes are way less crowded and intimidating. Plus, it’s the most incredible way to start off your morning. If your job is flexible, the 9am- 4:30p classes have plenty of space as well.
  • BUT- if you’re not a morning person and you have a day job- then mentally prepare for the evening classes. They will be hot, a little smelly and you may be literally mat-to-mat with the person next to you. Plus- you blend in. Minus- Ew.
  • Start off with a *sculpt* or *power yoga*…the postures are usually more basic and combine simple moves like lunges and bicep curls with yoga. Once you have the Sun A and Sun B down, you’ll feel more confident.
  • Yoga can be taught in *regular people speak* or sanskrit- each instructor is different and calls it like they want to. Once again- follow the people around you if you get lost and eventually you’ll be bi-lingual in yogi.
  • Bikram is hot. Like really hot. Bring a beach towel and hand towel because you will sweat and then your sweat will sweat. But guess what? The postures are the same-in every class no matter where you go. I find Bikram’s postures much more boring and a lot easier than a power yoga class, but I am always more sore the following day. If you like and can tolerate extreme heat- then Bikram will help ease you into the world of yoga. I swear I’ve never felt more energized than after a class. However, it will ruin your blow out and spray tan…so be mindful of that.
  • Power yoga can be a real workout and almost always includes a killer abs session. I’ve found that the more yoga I do, the more difficult it gets because I try the advanced postures. Sculpt uses weights and feels like a weights class at a gym.
  • Sculpt classes also sometimes incorporate *cardio bursts*- jumping jacks, squat jumps, burpees. But you can always modify if you feel like passing out.
  • I’m not a doctor, but you won’t pass out. Calm down. Breathe. All these other chicks and dudes are doing it and tons have done it before them. You are not different (unless you have a medical condition or haven’t eaten or something doctors deal with) so suck it up. Breathe thru it and don’t leave the room, that panicky feeling is normal at first, I PROMISE it will go away. (Unless you’re in Bikram and like me…I always panic a little)
  • If you have it bring: a yoga mat, big towel (to put on your mat), little towel (to wipe your face with) and a water bottle. If you have none of this- most studios let you rent it. Wear as little as possible, and make sure your shorts are tight if you wear them. It’s hot- people wear bathing suits…men wear only shorts. And open gym shorts are just porno in a rude way.

Yoga Bird of Paradise

Halloween 2012 in Emma’s class at Core Power- it was *dress as your favorite yoga pose* for Halloween day. I was a *bird of paradise*…see what a jackass I look like!? WHO CARES- it was awesome and fun…just like yoga.

 

Namaste b*^ches.

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