Research, Research, Research
Do some research into the different yoga classes offered at your local studio; if you’re looking for increased flexibility and strength, try an Ashtanga class, which is physically demanding. Or if you’re after a more meditative practice, try a Yin class, which offers a great way to test your mental strength – the stretches might seem gentle but the length of time you have to hold them for can be testing at first.
Your Body Shape Will Change
As long as you practice yoga regularly, it really can change your body shape. Ashtanga and vinyasa forms of yoga are particularly known for their toning benefits, especially around the core. Yoga uses so many muscles that you would never normally use, guaranteeing a full-body workout. This, in time, will get your whole body back in sync, giving you better posture as well as fewer back and hip problems.
If you’re keen to start yoga to become more flexible, it’s worth remembering that the more stressed you are, the longer this process could take – high levels of cortisol in the blood can stop the body from relaxing and lengthening. While the average person can increase hamstring length fairly quickly, shoulder and hip flexibility takes time and requires consistent practice.
What To Wear
Make sure your leggings aren’t too tight and your t-shirt isn’t too baggy. As it’ll end up over your face when you’re in a forward fold. Lastly, remember no socks and shoes – some studios even have a no-shoe policy.
Avoid Comparing Yourself
Try not to compare yourself to others – instead, focus on your personal improvement and take it steady. Remember each body type is unique and different people are at different levels of expertise.