New to yoga? Here are 7 tips from our Yoga Guru for Beginner Yoga!

  1. Flexibility – You don’t have to be flexible to do yoga! One of the primary reasons people commit to a yoga practice is to gain flexibility. The more constricted your range of motion, the more you will benefit from practicing yoga.
  2. Gender – Yoga’s not only for girls! Yoga requires strength, discipline, and all sorts of manly stuff (plus there are a ton of beautiful women in lululemon yoga pants posing at the local yoga studios). According to Shaquille O’Neal, LeBron James, and Ray Lewis do it, and so can you! Yoga has been proven to reduce injuries, increase flexibility, and build strength, what more could an athlete, male or female, want?
  3. Clothing – As mentioned before, lululemon pants are amazing, but they’re not required attire for a yoga class. Wear comfortable clothes that you can move around in, sweats and a t-shirt are totally appropriate yoga attire.
  4. Gear – You don’t need any! One of the best things about yoga is that the only thing you really need is your own body (*Practice long enough and the rumor is you don’t even need that anymore, it will all happen in your mind). All of the local SWFL studios have mats and props available for student use. All you need to bring is yourself and a smile!
  5. Feet – Yes, it’s true, we practice yoga without shoes or socks. It will be ok, I promise. Although in the Western world we’re encouraged to cover our feet, in yoga toes are needed for gripping and your whole bare foot is used in balancing poses. Kick off your shoes, relax your feet, and you may even learn a bit of reflexology in the process.
  6. Savasana (corpse pose) – The most challenging pose in yoga, believe it or not,f is savasana (or as most beginners experience it, nap time). Many yoga classes end with this pose, which requires you to lie on your back for five to ten minutes with your eyes closed. Etiquette dictates that you do so, even if you’re in a gym, this is not the time to check your phone, grab your keys, or put on your shoes. Just lay there for five minutes; everyone needs a little rest sometimes.
  7. Namaste – Just so you don’t feel left out… Many local yoga classes end with the instructor bowing their head and saying Namaste. This roughly translates to:  The light within me acknowledges and bows to the light within you, in this place we are truly one. It is customary to repeat the word Namaste after the instructor says it, but it is not required.

I have personally attended classes in almost all of the SWFL Yoga Studios, and they ROCK! All studios welcome newcomers, and will happily answer any questions you may have. In fact the yoga community is so friendly around here that they offer FREE community classes every week! Community classes are typically for yoga practitioners of all levels, and specifically break down poses for those new to yoga. Below are the ones I know about, and if you happen to hear of any more, please share!

Alliance for the Arts Green Market (Fort Myers) – Saturday 9:30:10:30
Joyful Yoga (Bonita Springs) – Saturday 12:30-1:30
Naples Green Market (Naples) – Saturday 10-11
lululemon athletica Waterside Shops (Naples) – Sunday 11-12