Yoga is quickly gaining popularity due to its health benefits and its ease of execution without prior experience or costly equipment. Worldwide, roughly 300 million people practice yoga daily. Kudos to you for getting involved in such a positive practice.
Yoga classes, as we know, are video-based or in-person interactions led by a certified yoga teacher. Unfortunately, it is pretty easy to get intimidated by so many people in a yoga class.
If you are wondering how to prepare for your first yoga class, lucky for you, we’ve got you covered!
In this blog post, you will know:
- What gear to carry in your first class
- Pre-snacking techniques to avoid weakness
- Class etiquette
- Expert tips to make your first yoga class a breeze
Getting the Right Apparel
Much like a fitness studio, yoga practice calls for stretchable clothes that help your skin breathe. Unfortunately, many people wear clothes that are too tight to look good but forget about the importance of comfort. Your best bet is to go for a loose t-shirt, a tank top, and a pair of stretchy yoga pants that make you feel comfortable.
As for the fabrics, elastane is the most popular choice since it is pretty stretchable and instantaneously rebounds to its original shape. Pick fitted clothes with good moisture-wicking capacity and strong material for your bottom.
Here are some recommendations.
The last thing is shoes, which are not that important during yoga sessions since most people perform barefoot. However, if you feel uncomfortable exposing your feet, you can buy a pair of yoga socks with non-slip grips, which will improve your balance and prevent slipping.
Snacking Before Yoga
Instead of going on an empty stomach, you should eat something before a yoga class, so you do not feel light-headed. However, this does not mean you can pounce on any available five-course meal.
Go for something with a balanced distribution of carbs, proteins, and fats. Some good options include nuts, leafy greens, avocados, apple slices, hard-boiled eggs, or a bowl of oatmeal. If you want something quick, you can even whip up a smoothie and drink it on the way to a few classes.
All in all, eat what your body agrees with and digests it quickly.
Other than a positive attitude and open mind, there are other things you need to bring with you to your yoga class. They are:
If you don’t own a yoga mat, you can easily rent one from your yoga studio for a dollar or two. However, it is advisable to buy one if you are practicing at home or have joined a regular yoga class. In addition, we suggest you invest in yoga mats made of high-quality material so they last longer. Here are a few options to consider.
While buying a yoga mat, don’t forget to consider the following features:
- Anti-slip grip
- Made of cotton, rubber, or jute
- Thick enough for knee support (most common: 4mm)
- Travel friendly and lightweight
- Easy to store
Along with practicing yoga positions, it is also essential to keep your body hydrated. Thus, it is advisable to carry a water bottle with you. Try adding some lemon extract, cucumber, or berries to add a little punch to your water. However, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Always drink your water sip by sip
- Drink at least 8 ounces of water 30 minutes before starting
- Avoid drinking excess water during the yoga session
Arriving at the Studio
Try to reach early as this will help you get acquainted with the environment and get familiar with your yoga teacher. Then, go with an icebreaker like: “Hi, I’m Adrian. This is my first yoga session. I’m a bit nervous but looking forward to learning with you and everyone!
Mention any crucial information such as injuries or medical history if needed. Once you have figured out where your class is being held, store your mobile phone in a locker, or put it aside if you are attending video-based sessions. The goal here is to channel all positive energy into your mind instead of getting distracted by a stray text.
Pro tip: If you are new to yoga, find a spot near your class’s front end so you can clearly hear all the instructions. This will also help you stay close to the instructor, who can monitor and correct you easily if you are striking a wrong pose.
Remember to carry a small water bottle and keep sipping some water regularly. This will help you recover and ensure your muscles do not cramp.
If you feel your heart rate is gushing or a specific part of your body is paining too much, feel free to return to a neutral position and sit idle. Another hack is to switch to the ‘child’s pose.’ Tuck your knees underneath your chest and lean forward with your hands spread out. Take deep breaths until you feel better.
Always remember to be helpful and compassionate to your fellow yogis. Good etiquette relies on two pillars: common sense and public decency. Aside from a timely arrival, remember to keep your phone on silent and respect others’ mat space. Also, try not to skip essential poses and go to the bathroom during breaks or resting positions only.
To Put it All Together.
Yin and hatha yoga to vinyasa, yogic practices come in plenty of styles. However, having the proper gear and knowing the names of some basic exercises make you feel confident about going to your first class. Click here to learn more about the history of yoga. Last but not least, once you are done with your routine, do a ‘savasana’ pose for relaxation. Here’s how you can do it.