Last week I went to my first ever yoga class. I was completely dreading it, envisioning lots of stick thin people bending into contortionist poses whilst I fell on my face. The reality was a lot nicer…
I had signed up to a class for beginners at a local yoga studio. The studio was very modern and both the staff and other yoga goers were very friendly. I was glad to see that it wasn’t all 20-year-old stick people but a mixture of ages and sizes and about 7 of the 25 participants were men.
We entered the yoga studio and the room was very peaceful and even had twinkly lights in the ceiling. Everyone found a mat and we were asked to be silent whilst we lay for a few minutes relaxing. The yoga instructor was welcoming and positive. I’ve been doing meditation for a while and find the positive mantras very empowering – I was pleased to hear these being used throughout the yoga class too.
After the short rest we began getting into different poses. The instructor demonstrates the poses and then goes around moving people into the correct positions, but not in an intrusive way. She said that she encouraged laughing, which was a good thing because there were three lads at the front giggling away, especially during the ‘Tree’ pose where we had to wave our arms like branches and have a ‘dance party’.
My least favourite pose is definitely the yoga staple – ‘Downward facing dog’. We did do a lot of other poses though and some of them were quite pleasant – such as the tree pose above. I came away from the class feeling positive that I could get the hang of yoga with practice and was happy that I hadn’t embarrassed myself or collapsed at any point!
I would definitely recommend trying yoga. My wise friend’s advice: ‘Don’t feel self-conscious, remember that everyone is too busy worrying about what they’re doing to notice what you’re doing.’
Yoga was a great way to really switch off from my worries and just ‘be’, I came out feeling very zen! I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in meditation/mindfulness or general stress relief.
How about you, what are your experiences with yoga? Would you like to try it but are reluctant? Let me know…