This is a no-nonsense practical advice on Yoga for beginners. Read on and enjoy good health!
A Word of Caution
As someone who has learned the advanced stage of Yoga and been practicing it for several years now (as of writing this article in April 2010), I can very strongly advise you to NEVER EVER attempt practicing Yoga through the Do-It-Yourself advice on Yoga for beginners widely available these days, simply because Yoga does not work that way.
· Take it from me or leave it, but I have done this once and it required hard work and a trained guru to reverse the damage by 98%.
· Yoga is a treasure house of health, peace of mind and confidence.
· Yoga must be learned from a Guru teaching it for decades to thousands of students.
The Pre-Yoga mindset
If you need practical advice on Yoga for beginners, train your mind on these points first, as a primer.
· Have a firm mindset to learn Yoga up to the advanced levels including Kriyas (more on this in just a bit) only from a trained guru.
· Have a firmer mindset to practice the asanas every single day. If you are not serious about this step, you may please go ahead and close this page!
· It may be a good idea to cleanse your body of all toxins (explained in the Kriya section) so that your body is flexible.
· Cut down on your junk and non-vegetarian food as much as possible.
Is Yoga right for me?
· Age limit: 10 – 100 Years!!! (But do not start when you are 99 years old. The upper limit is applicable only if you start at age 30, max)
· Yoga asanas do not need warm up! Sure, this is a big turn on for anybody.
· If you do Yogasanas properly, you will never sweat. Boy, this is true! This is a very important and practical advice on yoga for beginners.
· Do not strain (or aim for perfection initially) while doing Yogasanas; do them very slowly. Trust me, you are gonna have fun!
· Yoga, is thoroughly scientific and so, follow your trainer’s instructions ad verbatim.
· Try not to practice more than 30-45 minutes each day, preferably early morning. Oops, sorry if you are a night bird!
Postures and Practical Benefits
These asanas may be sufficient to begin with (under expert supervision).
1. Mathsyasana: A superb technique to relax and strengthen your neck, shoulder and upper back muscles.
2. Vipareetha Karani: An outstanding technique that relaxes and strengthens your internal organs in the lower part of your body.
3. Sarvaanga Asana: This is considered one of the gems of Yoga and has several benefits including putting all internal organs in harmony with each other.
4. Shava Asana: Literally, the “Corpse” posture. It targets each and every muscle and perhaps tissues and cells as well and relaxes each one of them. This is a great technique and a very practical advice on Yoga for beginners.
5. Virksha Asana: Literally, the “Tree” posture; it helps to balance all the “Chakras” or glands of your body.
6. Nadi Shudhdhi Pranayama: This teaches the precise way of breathing to flush out toxins.
7. Kapalabhathi Pranayama: This is said to do the job of a Ventilator! But it is extremely easy to do.
Kriyas: The Secret Health Chest
All these must be done strictly under expert advice/guidance
1. Body Cleansing: The enema procedure, this is ideally done before starting Yoga practice, up to twice a year.
2. Vamana Dhouthi: Meaning self-induced vomiting, this makes your body lighter and practically flushes out toxins. Frequency: once a week.
3. Jala Neti: Now called “Nasal Irrigation” this very simple technique cleanses the respiratory canal. Do it to believe it!
4. Suthra Neti: “Suthra” means thread. This technique achieves the same purpose achieved by Jala Neti Kriya. This may not be an advice on Yoga for beginners but for slightly advanced students.
Disclaimer: This article is not intended to replace professional advice and should at best serve as general information or tips. You are urged to seek professional advice from practitioners in the field to help you further.