Practicing yoga at home is a great way to get some exercise in if you can’t make it to a class. All you need is a mat! However, if you’re trying to master some tricky yoga poses and you just can’t get over that hurdle, being on your own can be a hindrance.
Here’s our top 10 tips for practicing and mastering hard yoga poses at home.
1. Create the right space
Having a dedicated space for yoga will make practicing at home so much easier. Try to find a space to unroll your mat that’s quiet and peaceful, with plenty of space around to move your body freely. Remove any obstacles if needed.
Try to find an empty wall that you can use as a prop for poses that require a bit of extra support. Maybe you’d like to light a candle to make the atmosphere even more relaxing and inviting.
2. Invest in accessories
Starting out, all you need is a yoga mat. Try to invest in a non-slip mat to avoid any accidents or injuries! It’s worth paying a little more for a high quality mat that will last you a long time.
If you’re progressing further into your poses, buying yoga blocks is also a good idea, to help you move deeper into poses without hurting yourself. Any props you would need in a yoga studio, you can purchase for your practice at home. Evaluate your needs, and invest in some good equipment to help you master those tricky yoga poses!
3. Stay safe
When you have a yoga teacher, they’ll help you in knowing your boundaries and preventing injury. Practicing at home leaves this responsibility up to you. Be mindful of areas like knees, neck and joints which can be vulnerable. Adjust or come out of the pose if you feel any pain or discomfort. It can be easy to fall into the trap of pushing yourself into tricky poses before you’re ready, but listen to your body’s limitations, you’ll get there!
You should also always remember to warm up before attempting any advance poses, and be mindful during transitions into poses.
4. Reward your body with Savasana
No matter how far you get in your pose and practice, always remember to give your body the relaxation it deserves with savasana.
When practicing at home it can be easy to skip this part, our mind goes straight to other chores or tasks we need to get done. However, to calm your nervous system and stop you feeling wired, it’s essential to lie in savasana for a while.
5. Keep at it
Keeping a regular practice at home will help you in mastering those tricky poses. You won’t be able to do the hardest variations if you only practice yoga every once in a while. Try to stay on top of practicing often, set yourself realistic goals and times when you’ll be on the mat, and stick to them.
6. Break the pose down
Complex poses and asanas can be broken down into smaller, less hard asanas. When you’re learning something hard, break it down into its smaller pieces. This way you can practice the individual parts and you’ll understand your alignment and posture better - to reduce injury.
Practice poses that lead up to hard ones, and over time you’ll build your strength and flexibility to progress. Even if you find yourself getting bored, remember these easier poses are the base to the harder asanas.
7. Know everything about the pose
The more you research and learn about the pose, the more you’ll understand it. Read up on the muscles you use, the benefits, and variations to fully immerse yourself in everything to do with it. You’ll be able to figure out how to modify each pose to suit you, as well as incorporate props to help you get there. There’s plenty of information about for you to brush up on your technical yoga skills.
8. Use a teacher
Just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you can’t use a yoga teacher. Use an online resource to find guidance and help from a yoga teacher. You can use these resources to refine your practice at home, and build your confidence for harder poses. Why not browse our range of yoga classes to find a teacher and a style that suits you?
9. Be brave
If you find a pose hard, it can be easy to just skip it when you’re at home alone. Try not to stop immediately if you’re struggling, unless you’re in pain and need to rest. Instead, listen or remember the instructions about the pose you’re trying to achieve, and try to break it down and attempt it. Or even just try the basic variations to build your confidence - anything but just give up completely!
10. Don’t obsess
Yes, we can be single minded when it comes to achieving our goals, but always remember - there are more yoga poses! Trying a hard pose is a great way to improve your skills and hone your practice, but it’s important to remember the bigger picture instead of obsessing over one pose.
By Amy Cavill
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