Yoga How To Develop A Home Practice

Many people ask how to​ start a​ home yoga practice so here is​ some information to​ get you going. First I will review the​ basics and then discuss how often to​ practice and what to​ practice. Remember though,​ the​ only right practice is​ regular practice! Don’t let your desire for perfectionism get in​ your way. Just show up at​ your mat and practice. Yoga is​ a​ life-long journey – perhaps many lives!


The space should be quiet,​ and ideally used only for yoga. (Can be a​ section of​ any room)
Place a​ mat,​ blanket or​ towel on​ the​ floor.
The temperature should be moderate - not too cold and not too hot.
The room should have fresh air but not windy or​ cold.
Sunrise and sundown are desirable times for yoga (although any time works!)


Wear light comfortable clothing.
A bath or​ shower before is​ good for limberness -wait at​ least 20 minutes after
practicing before bathing)
In the​ morning wash,​ urinate and move the​ bowels before practice.
Practice before eating or​ wait two hours after a​ meal.

Physical Practice (asanas)

Do not practice if​ there is​ a​ fever or​ deep wounds. Consult a​ teacher if​ there is​ an​ illness.
Spend five to​ ten minutes warming up/stretching before beginning practice.

Do not force your limbs into a​ difficult position. in​ time your body will open. we​ are after sensation not pain!

Beginners should hold each asana for 3-5 breaths. After about three months of​ regular practice this can be increased to​ 5 to​ 10 breaths.

Always inhale and exhale through the​ nostrils unless specified otherwise. Focus on​ making the​ breath slow and smooth.

At any time you need a​ rest come into child pose or​ shavasana (corpse pose)
Finish asanas with shavasana for five to​ ten minutes.

How often to​ practice.

The rule of​ thumb for how often to​ practice is​ simple: it​ is​ better to​ practice for short durations regularly than to​ practice once a​ week for a​ long time. in​ other words it​ is​ better to​ practice 4 times a​ week for forty-five minutes then to​ practice one day for two hours.

With that being said some people get what they need from practicing just a​ couple of​ times each week while other practice five or​ six times a​ week. it​ varies from person to​ person. On average though you will get the​ most benefit from your practice with average of​ four sessions per week. the​ length of​ time of​ each session depends on​ your experience with yoga,​ time constraints,​ level of​ fitness,​ and motivation. a​ good idea is​ to​ have a​ journal to​ keep track of​ your practice with information such as​ date,​ how long you practiced,​ what you practiced,​ how you felt during and after your practice,​ what thoughts came to​ mind during practice,​ how you felt later in​ the​ day as​ well as​ the​ next day,​ which postures were challenging and which were felt good.

General framework for your session

Always begin your practice with easy movements and build towards the​ more difficult postures ending with a​ cool down. Imagine a​ bell curve: at​ the​ beginning of​ the​ bell curve is​ a​ moment of​ centering. as​ you move up the​ curve there are warm-ups,​ then opening postures which help to​ build heat/ flexibility/strength and at​ the​ top of​ the​ curve are the​ most challenging postures. Moving down the​ other side of​ the​ bell curve are cool down postures followed by Shavasana.

Here is​ a​ template that you can use to​ create your own practice session:

Theme or​ focus (more on​ this below):

Opening postures
Challenging postures:
Cool down postures:

Which postures to​ practice.

Sometimes it​ is​ fun to​ have a​ practice without any preconceived notion of​ what to​ do and just see what comes out. Sometime it​ is​ desirable to​ tune into your body and see what your body is​ asking for. Other times you’ll want to​ plan your session as​ indicated above. it​ is​ during these session that having theme will be helpful. Some classical themes include: backbends,​ forward bends,​ twists,​ balance postures,​ standing postures,​ seated postures,​ inversions,​ restorative postures,​ hip openers,​ shoulder openers,​ strength building postures,​ groin openers,​ hamstring openers,​ and postures that build energy. Linking postures together (vinyasa) is​ yet another way to​ create a​ practice. in​ the​ Iyengar system we​ focus on​ linking alignment cues from posture to​ posture. of​ course you may have specific health reasons that you are working with for which it​ would be best to​ consult a​ qualified yoga teacher to​ help create a​ practice. I encourage you to​ be creative – come up with your own themes and see how it​ is. it​ has been said that in​ yoga you are both the​ scientist and the​ experiment!

In my book “Beginning Yoga: a​ Practice Manual” I offer 20 different practice sequences to​ guide your home practice as​ well as​ a​ chapter on​ how to​ set up a​ home practice.
Yoga How To Develop A Home Practice Yoga How To Develop A Home Practice Reviewed by Henda Yesti on April 30, 2018 Rating: 5

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