Is Yoga Right For Me?
Yoga is a meditative and strengthening cardiovascular exercise. There are many different kinds of yoga and levels of skill. As a sole form of exercise or in addition to a fitness regime, yoga is a great way to stretch, strengthen and relax. Since there are so many approaches to teaching yoga and many different styles of yoga, finding the right one for you is not difficult — though it may require persistence.
Styles of Yoga
Traditional yoga may focus on poses and breathing alone, or may involve repetitive sets of poses as with vinyasa flow yoga. If you are looking for a cardiovascular exercise, vinyasa flow yoga might be a great match for you. If you are looking to build strength, a traditional yoga class that focuses on individual poses for more extended periods of time may be a better match. If you are looking for an intense yoga session, Bikram yoga, or hot yoga, incorporates high temperatures. There are yoga classes that are catered to pregnancy and elders. Prenatal yoga, or senior yoga, tend to be more relaxed and focused on breathing, balance, posture and meditation. Prenatal yoga specifically focuses on hip openers and keeping blood flow supplied to the stomach. Seniors yoga is slower and gentler.
Is Yoga Right for Me?
When considering whether yoga is right for you, it helps to consider your skill level. In most classes, instructors give several different options and adjustments for each pose that will cater the lesson to any skill level. However, attempting skilled positions in some of your beginning classes is not recommended. It is most helpful to expose yourself to new positions in yoga without straining your muscles or ligaments. However, if you have been practicing yoga for a while and feel the class is less rewarding that it first was, you might consider attempting more challenging adjustments to your poses. The balance, strength and flexibility required for certain poses requires years of dedication, and there is always room for improvement.
Choosing the Right Yoga Style and Instructor for You
Another important consideration when choosing a yoga class that is right for you is the instructor. It’s important to remember that there are many different approaches to teaching yoga. Some yoga classes are more focuses on particular poses that are more or less helpful for you personally. Others might be focused on meditation entirely. It is important to consider what you are hoping to get out of your yoga session when choosing a class. Understanding that your experience with one instructor is not necessarily reflective of your overall yoga practice is also important. Finding an instructor and style that is right for you is the best way to transition to a regular yoga regime. Remember to try many different types of yoga, different instructors and different skill levels to choose the yoga that is best for you.
See also Styles of Yoga.