Monday, May 11, 2009

Yoga

Lately I have been leading a more sedentary lifestyle than I did previously, and I feel as if I am getting a bit rusty. I don't own a car, so I walk a lot, but I feel somehow that's not enough. Often I get into the habit of sitting at work, and then going home and perhaps logging onto the computer for a while -- and sitting, and then doing some sketching or painting, or watching TV or reading -- and sitting. You get the idea. Lately I have been feeling the need to stretch. I am considering joining a Yoga class, but there are so many different types of Yoga, on so many different levels, that I don't have any idea which to join.

Do any of you know anything about Yoga? If so, your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to let me know which type of Yoga is best for a rusty beginner like me. Many thanks.

22 comments:

Rebecca said...

I took a wonderful Kripalu yoga course back in Montreal. It was very relaxed - not too strenuous, no pressure to achieve the perfect posture, everyone was encouraged to go at their own pace, etc. But I'm not sure how much of it has to do with finding the right type of yoga or finding the right teacher. Most yoga studios will specify on the schedule which ones are gentle, moderate... so my advice is find a studio close to your home or work that you like and try out a few of the 'gentle' classes to find the one that is a good fit! It's worth it!

Jelica said...

No experience with yoga--I'm not attracted at all by all that stretching--but maybe you should try swimming? It's good for all of your muscles and it's very refreshing.

(not a very helpful answer to your question, sorry)

amourissima said...

I agree with Rebecca, when I started yoga I didn't know where to begin so I picked one of the studios close to me and started with beginners Ashtanga yoga. There I learnt the fundamentals (alignment and breath.) that I now feel comfortable doing any yoga. The studio and instructor were important to me (I didn't want to just do it in the gym with florescent lights and grunting meat heads in the background.) so most studio's will allow you to tour and sometimes spy on classes so you get a good taste of what you are going to be participating in. Hatha is another one I have enjoyed- it's a more gentle form of yoga (or so my experience has been.) and again a good introduction to yoga.

Yoga has changed my life- it sounds a bit extreme to say so but it has. I too do not own a car and walk EVERYWHERE (regardless of the temperature.) but when I started to do yoga I gained a whole new respect for my body. It became important to me to really nourish it with good foods and I had a whole new level of respect for it.
I started doing it because I didn't want to become rigid but I keep doing it because I love how I feel when it's something regular I do in my life.

Good luck!!

Lover of Life said...

I'm interested in what you find out about Yoga. I, too, am sitting way too much!

Johnnny said...

I am trying to do more stretching these daze. Here is a website you might find helpful to do some extra stretching while sitting around the computer.
{My Daily Yoga}

Owen said...

I asked my wife what she thinks, because she is doing yoga daily, and has been for a few years now. She swears by it for beneficial effects. The first word that came to her mind was "Hatha", good for beginners... but more importantly, she said one must find a professor or a group with whom one is perfectly comfortable... and take it slowly from there. She says it is not a quick fix, one can spend years acquiring the essentials... although she says it is a positive influence right from the start. Good luck with your new mission !

lovelyprism said...

Wow that's amazing, I was just wondering about that myself. I would love to join a yoga class but I always feel so fat, awkward and clumsy if I do things like that in public. I was thinking about ordering some video tapes instead. I'd like to hear what you find out.

ivan said...

Well, I'd rather lope than do the lotus, but I have been re-reading this excellent old novel by John Updike, IN THE BEAUTY OF THE LILLIES.

Here you have the complete vocabulary of yoga,all it means physically and metaphysically, while couched in the pages of a great novel.
In the novel, the Swami is a fraud and ecological criminal, but man, does he know his yoga!

Leah Fry said...

I'm a huge Pilates fan myself, or crosses between yoga and Pilates.

Leah Fry said...

I'm a huge Pilates fan myself, or crosses between yoga and Pilates.

Canarybird said...

I agree that yoga should be a good idea for you Jo. Years ago I did some at home but for the last year I've been doing Stott machine pilates which I love because we take it very easy and do gentle progressive exercises that for me do exactly what I need to combat the lack of movement from long hours sitting at the computer.
I also walk there and back twice a week to the gym for this. The amount of resistance on the machines is controlled by springs so each class member can adjust them to her fitness level. Funny it took me a while to realize all our equipment was made in Canada....a long way from here!

Starlene said...

I do kripalu yoga myself, but I'm no expert. I follow an audio cd I got for XMas one year that came with some flash cards demonstrating the poses.

However, there's this nice lady named Suki who has a blog called Paint, Poems, and Ponderings and from what I understand, she is quite the yoga devotee. I think she may have some kind and useful advice.

Whitney Lee said...

Yoga is fantastic for your mind & body. I try to exercise a fair amount (not to mention chasing a toddler) and yet when I do yoga I get the opportunity to rediscover muscles I forgot I had. It flat out feels good to stretch. But the key is that yoga is about finding that place within and it uses the twisting and stretching and breathing as a means to reach that place. I would suggest that a beginner class of some sort would be the best (and safest) way to introduce yourself. Face it; if you don't have a clue what you're doing it's easy to strain a muscle. Hell, I can hurt myself just reaching for that box on the top shelf! And if you try a class and don't care for it, all you've lost is a few dollars and an hour of your time.
I always feel much more balanced (& not just physically) after yoga. Keep us posted!

JR's Thumbprints said...

My eyes are bad, Yogi or Yoga? How about baseball? Yogi Berra says it's ninety percent mental and the other half's physical.

Dominic said...

My mom started taking a yoga class at her local gym, and it was too much for her.

But she looked at the sheet they gave her, and they offered a class for older people (she's the youngest in the class), and she really digs it.

Here's her blog: http://fit-by-fifty.blogspot.com/

Marvins Fan said...

Hi Jo. You could start with any beginners course. In case, you'd like to try it at home there are some very good dvds available that are just as good.

Mer said...

Hi Jo!
I used to do Yoga a lot, and really enjoyed it. However, I only took it as stretching, not incorporating the whole yogic lifestyle and eating habits.
Even so, it's great!
Try this website: www.yogajournal.com.
You can also find nice videos on various postures on Youtube. Try starting with some "Sun Salutations". If you do 2-3 of those in the morning, I'm sure it will improve your day.

white crow said...

i wud prefer RAM DEV YOGA STYLES.
RAM DEV is the most famous yog guru of SOUTH EAST ASIA.

Jo said...

Thank you, everyone, for you wonderful suggestions! I have found a Yoga class for beginners (like me...) and I will keep you posted. The stretching feels wonderful, omigosh!

Cheers!

exurbanpedestrian said...

agree with the Leah who suggested Pilates. I always got too antsy with yoga because it’s so slow. Pilates has the same basis, but gives you a bit of an aerobic work-out as well. I love Pilates. But if you’re into the slow, relaxing thing I’d start with Hatha yoga. And like others have said, much will depend on the instructor.

exurbanpedestrian said...

agree with the Leah who suggested Pilates. I always got too antsy with yoga because it’s so slow. Pilates has the same basis, but gives you a bit of an aerobic work-out as well. I love Pilates. But if you’re into the slow, relaxing thing I’d start with Hatha yoga. And like others have said, much will depend on the instructor.

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