Yoga is everywhere right now… literally. From gym floors to city rooftops to parks and basement studios, it seems every corner you turn someone’s doing a downward dog or practising their side plank.
Yes, it’s safe to say that the ancient practice of yoga has made its way firmly into the mainstream and is now one of the most popular types of exercise around. This is particularly true of London. From Shoreditch to Chelsea, our great city is teeming with yoga practices of every kind – you name it, the smoke’s got it; from traditional forms like Hatha and Asthanga, to hot Bikram yoga, dynamic flow, boxing yoga and a range of dance-yoga fusions.
You might even say that yoga has become (dare we say it?) trendy. While we don’t think this isn’t wholly bad (the more yogis are spreading the word, the better), we know that some of the jargon that often accompanies yoga blogs and articles can be off-putting. Words like mindfulness, asanas, chakras and mantras are regularly bandied about (and not always in the right context). This can be daunting and even make people reluctant to start practising yoga.
If you want to give yoga a go but the hundreds of variations leave you reeling, or if you’re not yet convinced that the yoga trend is here to stay, Ana Heart can change your mind with a compilation of yoga poses for beginners. Our goal from the outset has been to bring yoga back to its simplest form (something, we think, is reflected in our classic, comfy yoga wear). We want to cut down on the jargon, bring the practice back to basics and make yoga accessible to every woman, everywhere.
Because Ana Heart knows that yoga isn’t about posturing (proving you can do the deepest downward do or the most daring dancers pose in class). When you get down to the heart of it, all that really matters is you, your breath and your awareness. The rest? It will come in time. As for the poses (or asanas, as they’re formally known), don’t be put off by complicated-sounding names or images of yogis in spine-twisting contortions – yoga postures are designed to work in sync with your body and your breath (in fact, breathing is just as important as all the physical stuff).
To help you get started, we’ve designed a fool-proof infographic showing you the best yoga poses for beginners. These have been carefully selected as some of the most important poses in yoga, which provide the basis to many more advanced standing and seated postures. You’ll find a picture of each pose accompanied by detailed instructions telling you exactly how to achieve the posture, along with the physical and mental benefits you’ll get from each one.
Once you’ve mastered the 10 poses in our yoga infographic, you’ll have the perfect basis for any yoga practice, whether that’s dynamic flow, Yin yoga or Bikram. But don’t start on the hard stuff just yet – the stronger your basic poses, the easier you’ll find the complex ones! And remember: practice makes perfect, if you fall, laugh, get up and try again and – most importantly – breathe.