This is a common question. My personal answer is “Yes, but shop around.” As with doctors, hairdressers, and repairmen, it’s good to shop around for Yoga intructors.
Note: Shopping around also includes DVD instructors.
“I’ve heard Yoga hurts.”
It can if your push your body too far. Many people have hurt their backs, hips, and joints trying to do Yoga. Usually, this is because people don’t realize that they don’t have to fully come into the posture to still get a good result.
Personal note: In this past year, a client came in with back and hamstring spasms. When they were asked what happened, they said they were in Yoga class and tried to touch their toes. Unfortunately, they tried to copy their instructor exactly and ended up overstretching into a position their body wasn’t ready for.
In order to prevent injury:
- Hydrate with water during the session
- Stretch only as far as your body with allow
- If pain starts to occur, back off of the pose a little. Try to find a modified position.
- If your body starts to shake, that’s a sign that your body is straining. Either take a break or modify the poses to be a little easier.
- If you can’t do a pose due to an old injury or because of muscle weakness, it’s okay. Take it slow and don’t overdo it.
- Go slow and use yoga blocks until your body builds up enough strength to do the routine without too much trouble.
Note: Your instructor might be able to help you with modified poses.
Don’t give up on Yoga just yet though. There are tons of benefits to Yoga.
Benefits of Yoga
There are the expected benefits of Yoga:
- Body Strengthening
- Stress Relief
- Knowledge of Meditation
But there are more benefits that not everyone knows:
- Increased Flexability
- Core Strengthening
- Bodily balance
- Improved blood pressure
- Improved chemical and hormonal balance
- Muscle and joint strengthening
- Decrease in insomnia and panic attacks
- Increased metabolism and energy
Overall, Yoga is an exercise. It could be included as a weight loss tool and cardio workout.
“How do I start Yoga?”
Here are a few Yoga positions for beginners you can try in your free time. Remember to always be aware of your body and not to push too hard.
Personal Note: Check out the link for more of Candace’s yoga poses. I’ve used some of these myself.