International Yoga Day 2021 falls on 21st June, 2021 and now that it’s just around the corner, it’s great to start committing yourself to the Yoga lifestyle. As a beginner, it is imperative to define your personal yoga approach that is flexible, simple, and easy to sustain. Once you have figured out the essential basics of your yoga journey, like the type of practice to pursue, a credible learning source, and a planned schedule to fit in the yoga practice; you need to gradually start prepping for the real thing.
Sarvesh Shashi, Co-Founder at SARVA - Yoga, Mindfulness and Beyond recommends that you start out slow, lead your daily yoga practice with poses that are simple to build your confidence in your body, and eventually phase it out with asanas that push you out of your comfort zone.
So, to ensure that you have a long-term association with the science of yoga, find below 10 important yoga asanas that will build a solid beginner level foundation for you:
Marjaryasana & Bitilasana
The combination of these two poses is normally done as a warm-up to kickstart your daily dose of yoga. The poses help in stretching your neck and front torso and relax the spine and the abdomen area.
Start on your knees and palms in the tabletop pose with your knees in direct alignment with your hips and wrists. Head is neutral and centred and eyes looking down, deeply inhale and raise your chest up forming an arch, exhale stretch your spine towards ceiling and chin to the collarbone, this time forming a downward curve. Relax and come back to the neutral pose and repeat the asana 5 to 7 times.
Start in a standing position, with legs hips apart. Inhale lift your heels and raise yourself stretching your thighs as you do so. Inhale and stretch your abdomen and chest and as you exhale release your shoulders away from your head. Widen your collarbone area and lengthen your neck. You can initially practice the pose with the support of a wall to keep your body alignment in check.
While the pose may look like it is all about balance, but it is actually about improving focus as you practice to find your balance. The pose also helps in the strengthening of your back and legs. Place your right foot high up and firmly on your left thigh. Keep your left leg straight and seek balance. Take a deep breath and as you inhale, raise your arms over your head and bring your palms together forming a Namaste. Ensure a straight back and take a few deep breaths. Slowly bring down your hands and release your right leg and relax. Repeat with the other leg.
As the name suggests, Balasana helps you to feel carefree, calm and centred. It helps relieve stress and fatigue. It is usually done to energize you in between tough routines. Bend your knees and sit keeping your hips on your heels. Rest your head on the mat and bring your hands either by your side or stretch them in the front. Hold the pose and gently breathe and relax.
Bhujangasana will strengthen your lower back muscles, spine and triceps as well as open the chest resulting in improved breathing. Lie on your stomach with your feet together. Place your hands downward under your shoulders on the mat. Inhale and slowly raise your head up and slowly tilt it back as you simultaneously lift your upper body till the waist. Support yourself with your hands, retain straight elbows and feel the pressure on your palms. As you leave your pose, exhale and come back on the mat and relax.
Rest on your yoga mat with your feet together and hands by your side. Take a deep breath and as you exhale lift your chest and feet off the ground. Straighten your hands in the direction of your feet. Your eyes placed on your fingers. Hold the pose then as you exhale come back to the ground and relax. Naukasana helps to tighten the abdominal muscles and strengthen your back and shoulders.
Adho Mukho Svanasana
Start with tabletop, with your knees and palms on the ground. Placing your toes on the mat, nails upwards, push your hands and slowly raise your hips with your feet firmly placed on the mat. Keep your head relaxed but maintain the pose with a tightened abdomen. The pose lengthens the spines and increases blood flow to the head.
Stand straight with your feet slightly apart, and then stretch your arms up without bending the elbows. Inhale and bend your knees, push your hip area down like you are sitting on a chair. Take deep breaths. Utkatasana strengthens the leg and arm’s muscle as well as increases body resistance.
Setu Bandha Sarvangasana
Lie on your back and place your feet wide apart and in line with your hips. With your feet pushed firmly on the ground lift your hips off the mat. Lock your hands together and open up your chest further. Hold for 8 to 10 breaths then lower your hips down and repeat thrice. This pose helps to stretch the front body and strengthens your back. Start your practice with these asanas and slowly you’ll be able to move on to mastering the advanced yoga poses.