Preparations And Precautions To Take While Practicing Yoga

By Patricia | April 29, 2009
Yoga Preparation & Precautions

Good preparations for Yoga include physical, mental and spiritual preparedness, as well as certain relevant factors such as the appropriate clothing, a suitable environment and food.

Clothing

Your apparel is very important and should allow free movement; for this it should be light and comfortable. Women would also be advised to avoid brassieres during Yoga practice as they tend to hamper your breathing. Wear a sports bra, instead. Both men and women would be better off in oversized cotton T-shirts and loose fitting pajamas.

Timings

Practice Yoga poses and breathing exercises in your free time and preferably during the day. Certain asanas (poses) should be advanced to gradually, one after the other. This will lead to enhancement of your skills and improvement in your spiritual awareness and growth.

Location

The appropriate location for a yoga class is very, very important if you are to derive the best results. Ideally, you should pick a location in a pleasant atmosphere, which is clean and silent, where you can concentrate better. Avoid practicing Yoga after sun-bathing and in the direct sunlight.

Warm ups

All yoga practitioners know that they must start their practices with stretches and warm up exercises, followed by uncomplicated breathing exercises that are designed to open up the lungs and clear the mind.

Precautions

Those suffering from severe back injuries, heart disease, inner ear problems, a recent surgery or any other health conditions must, necessarily, consult a physician before taking up the practice of yoga. During pregnancy, women are generally advised to modify all yoga practices, particularly in the first trimester.

Food

Avoid eating for a couple of hours prior to Yoga class but have plenty of water. Actually, you should avoid practicing Yogasanas and pranayamas (poses and breathing exercises) 2 – 3 hours after meals. It is also not advisable to drink water during Yoga class, since this tends to direct the flow of Prana (energy) downwards. Yoga practices, on the other hand, attempt to raise the energy upwards.

Relaxation

Whenever you feel tense, stiff, hyped-up or tired try, relax by doing certain Yoga relaxation postures. Most people tend to get excited and do difficult Yoga poses. We recommend that you do only those exercises and poses that make you feel better. Remember, tedious body poses can make things worse.

Know your limits

Remember, Yoga is not a competitive sport. It is and a good physical, mental and emotional regimen, done within the limits of what your body and mind are capable of taking on any specific day. Some people tend to compare their performance with those of others and push themselves too hard, imprudently assuming that exercise is of no use unless it hurts. On the contrary, Yoga teaches us that a tender and gentle attitude toward oneself is far more beneficial to pushing, punishing or driving yourself to the limits.

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