FAQ: Your First Yoga Class
Ask any seasoned yoga student about their first yoga class, and you’re likely to get a lot of smiles, laughs, and maybe even a few sighs. Most will tell you a similar story of feeling totally ridiculous, being two postures behind the teacher’s cues, and maybe even writing off yoga for good.
But then, they’ll also tell you the story of how much easier yoga gets. They might also tell you that their anxieties were totally misguided and they can’t even comprehend why they were so nervous in the first place!
At Yoga Pod West Houston, all of us were once beginner yoga students — and one of our goals as a yoga studio is to remember this in order to truly support yoga students of all levels.
We all wish we had a “yoga for beginners” survival guide (not that yoga is anything to survive, we might add) before we took our first class, so we have created this list of frequently asked questions and answers as a resource for you.
Question: What should I bring to my first yoga class?
Answer: You don’t technically need to bring anything, but we do recommend bringing a water bottle and coming to class hydrated. If you have a yoga mat, great. If not, don’t worry! We provide free mats for your first class and rent them for $2 after that. Even non-heated yoga classes tend to get sweaty, so we do recommend a non-slip mat or yoga towel. This way, you can focus on the class without worrying about slipping.
Question: Where should I set up my mat?
Answer: As you’ll realize with most questions about yoga, the answer is usually, “it depends. Everyone is different.” In terms of mat set-up, this is totally true. When it comes to yoga for beginners, many people suggest being in the back of class. This way, you can watch other students and follow their lead. Also, you don’t have to worry about people staring at you (not that they would, but we know this is a concern).
Others would advise you to be closer to a mirror, perhaps on the side of the room or in a corner. This way, you can check your alignment in the mirror and have an easier time balancing.
You could also situate yourself closer to the door or ask the yoga teacher about the cooler spots in the studio. If you’re worried about the heat or have a tendency to feel claustrophobic, this is a great option.
There really is no right answer. However, we do recommend arriving at least 15 minutes early so you can scope out the studio and situate your mat wherever you feel most comfortable.
Question: What if the class is too hard?
Answer: The best way to avoid this scenario is to look at our studio schedule and find a yoga for beginners class. If you have never tried yoga before — even if you’re athletic and have a fitness routine — we recommend our podBASICS class. You’ll benefit from a slower flow with more of a focus on alignment and foundational postures.
If podBASICS doesn’t fit into your schedule, you can also start out with podHOT or podFLOW 1. These are classes for all levels, so be prepared to have experienced practitioners and other beginner yoga students in the same space.
If you find yourself in a hard class, give yourself permission to slow down. Rest in child’s pose and reap the benefits of mindful breathing.
Ready to give yoga a try? Sign up for $30 For 30 Days at Yoga Pod West Houston!