By Yogi Vishnu
For those just beginning to learn yoga, know that you do not need to balance on top of your head or do a handstand to get the benefits of yoga. This will come with time and practice. Here are some yoga postures that are simple, easy and highly beneficial for beginners. These poses are commonly practiced in hatha and vinyasa yoga.You will gain stability, balance, and more connection to your body in these poses.
Downward Facing Dog
This is the staple pose in all yoga classes. Come to your mat in a table top position, with knees directly below your hips and wrists stacked underneath your shoulders. Keep your hands stable, bringing the fleshy part of the palm onto the mat with all ten fingers touching and pressing into the mat. Make sure your fingers are spread apart, with the middle finger facing forward. Keep your knees slightly bent and heels lifted as you lift your hips up off the floor. When you are ready, straighten your knees, and stretch your heels towards the floor. Lengthen your tailbone and spine. Bring your shoulder blades towards your back and keep your chest open. Breathe here for 5 full rounds.
This is the perfect beginner pose to build strength and prepare for arm balances. Start in Downward Facing Dog, bring your navel up towards your spine and move forward, stacking your shoulders above your wrists. Roll your shoulder back and press into the palms to create space between the shoulder blades. Keep your gaze straight down and hold the pose.
Feel at peace in this pose, as you embody the energy of a tree. Start at the top of the mat with your feet together and arms at the sides. Transfer the weight to your right foot, and bend your left knee to place the foot above or below the knee joint. Find stability here, activating and leaning into your right leg. Keep your gaze forward. Once you find your balance, bring your hands into prayer pose in front of the chest, or overhead in chinmudra with your thumb and forefinger touching. Hold for 5-10 breaths and switch sides.
This pose will connect you to your inner warrior. Stand with your feet at the top of the mat, then step your left foot back about three feet to open the hips. Place your left foot at a 90 degree angle, and line up the heel of your right foot with the left. Make sure your hips are squared in proper alignment, with your core engaged and tailbone down. Bend your right knee, stacking it over your right ankle. On your next inhale, extend your arms out alongside your body. Face towards the front of the mat looking over the middle finger of your right hand and relax your shoulder blades.
Start in Warrior 2. Straighten your front leg and reach forward as much as you can with your left hand. Bring your hand towards the ground to rest on your shin or place it on the floor if possible and rotate your torso to the right side. Extend your right arm to the ceiling with active fingers and look up. If you need more stability in the pose, use can place a block under your left hand.
I hope these poses help you and motivate you to continue practicing yoga! Remember that each pose is a preparation for the next and soon you will find your flow and continue to grow deeper into the poses each time you practice. If you have any questions, you can ask any yoga teacherfor advice.
Author Bio: After practicing yoga from very early age of 12, he decided to leave his family and friends behind to pursue the yogic path and meet his first Yoga Master – Narayan Muni at Jharsuguda Muni Samaj Yoga Ashram. It was here he took his first steps into the Himalayan Tradition. In 1988 he met his second Yoga Master – Swami Niranjan ji to learn the wisdom of the Vedas Yoga School in Rishikesh: https://vinyasayogaacademy.com/