Getting started with Yoga Part 2: Practice a Little

In this week’s blog, I am going to gently introduce you to the physical practice of yoga, so that we can work on quieting those devilish little voices that tell us it’s better not to even try, what if we get injured? What if we feel like a fool? What if we can’t do the pose? What if our better half walks in and sees all kinds of body parts up in the air? Those voices, that ultimately are trying to protect you, can get quite loud sometimes, and result in us eventually giving in and saying “tomorrow is another day”. It is, and those voices will be there tomorrow, too. So let’s get to work on giving those little devils a gentle hug and a heartfelt thank you for always being on your side (kind of). 

First, if you’re new here and are working on setting up your space for a safe and sustainable home yoga practice, you can check out this blog post which goes into detail on this topic. You can also grab my free guide on how to get set up and get going with yoga at home, just add your info below and it will wing its wonderful way to your inbox.

Why is it so hard to start a yoga practice?

OK, so, let’s get into it. One main reason we can become paralyzed when starting a yoga practice (figuratively speaking), is because of all the choices out there. There is SO MUCH free yoga on the web, which is WONDERFUL, but it means we have to sift through it all and figure out what is right for us, what we want, what we need, what is actually suitable for our level, and what teachers resonate with us. That takes a truckload of time and mental wherewithal which, I don’t know about you, I am severely lacking. “Done-for-you” is the second sexiest phrase in my opinion. (The first is “Pasta for dinner?”).

So what you will find below is a selection of videos from different teachers, all available on YouTube, curated into a 5-day schedule that you could try consecutively every day, or commit to one video every three days, or even one video a week. Whatever you can realistically do is GOOD ENOUGH. I promise. As one of my teachers, Arundhati (featured below), says, a little bit of yoga does you the world of good. So, don’t stress about how long or how frequently you are practicing as you’re starting out. Consistency is key. Pick a realistic schedule that works for you and stay consistent. You can always add more later.

Monday: Yoga with Kassandra – 10 mins gentle and simple yoga stretch:

Kassandra is a fantastic teacher – she is an expert at giving clear instructions so that you rarely, if ever, have to look at the screen. Try this video out to get started.

Tuesday: Fightmaster Yoga: Yoga For Beginners at Home (15 minute) 30 Day Challenge Day 1

Lesley Fightmaster was a fantastic teacher and I am sure you will enjoy her channel. She made those little devilish voices disappear for me. I will leave it there and let you experience her teaching for yourself.

Wednesday: 5-minute yoga for beginners – Aham Yoga

Aru is a brilliant, expert teacher and highly underrated in my opinion. Check out her podcast here. She is extremely knowledgeable and breaks down complex points into bitesize pieces. I am sure you will enjoy her classes – be sure to check out her channel for longer beginner-friendly ones, too.

Thursday: Yoga Asana Practice for Beginners | 15-Minute Workout | Yogalates with Rashmi

To keep up the momentum when a busy week starts to take its toll, try this video before the day starts (or whenever, really) and note how you feel afterward. Rashmi is another wonderful teacher, mixing yoga with Pilates for a different experience.

Friday: Yoga with Joelle: Yoga for Lower Back Pain and Hips – 10-Minute Beginner Stretches for the Low Back

Something to ease out the tension if you have had a week of sitting or being somewhat sedentary. Lower back pain and tight hips can be an indicator of too much sitting leading to a weakening of the core muscles, putting stress on the lower vertebra. Taking ten minutes to keep these areas mobile will do you the world of good. 

Try all, or some, or one of these videos, and keep a note of the following questions. Does it help to have a curated list? How did you feel right after the practice? What about later on in the day or evening? After practicing for a few days, what changes (if any) are you noticing in your sleep? Or general mood? Try to learn, to observe, without judgment. Let me know by emailing hello@elliesmithyoga, or dropping me a DM on Instagram. I’d love to hear how these videos impacted you.