8.20.2013

Ashtanga Yoga for Beginners

An accessible 40-minute practice for your first step on the yoga path.  Try it at home, share with a friend, and let me know how it goes in the comments below.

11 comments:

  1. Beautiful Megan. Great timing, since lots of folks are talking about beginner's mind. It always blows my mind how you teachers can speak while demonstrating asana. Love your hair by the way.

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    1. Thank you, Serene. I enjoyed making this, and the response has been great so far. As for the hair, I'm just letting it run wild. Love being free of the long locks.

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    1. Thanks, Cindy! I'm hoping it will serve as a nice intro for some.

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  3. Hello Megan! Thank you so much for this yoga video! It is a huge help because I really want to start ashtanga yoga and build both my strength and stamina. Yet, I keep on finding that I can barely finish Suyra Namaskara A (maybe making it to the last downward dog, with my arms burning and breath shaking). I don't know what I should do during that point. Should I continue on and try to power through? Should I rest in child's pose and wait till I feel less burnt out and continue? Should I stop there and try again tomorrow morning?

    Thank you for your help and for this wonderful video! I look forward to hearing from you! (:

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    1. Hi Michelle, I'm so glad you like the video practice. If you're challenged to get through the Surya Namaskara, there are a few things you can do while you develop your strength and endurance. You could 1) wait in samasthiti between rounds of Surya Namaskar until the breath is stable, 2) take your knees to the floor in "puppy pose" instead of downward dog when your shoulders feel fatigued, or 3) only do as many rounds as you can do without getting overheated or losing your breath, then move ahead to the last 3 finishing postures and take rest.

      Without seeing you in practice, it's hard for me to say which approach would be best for you, so I recommend you try each approach and see which one feels best. There is nothing wrong with taking a shorter practice. Maybe 3 Surya A, 3 Surya B, and the last three finishing postures is just the ticket to get you moving comfortably and happily through practice until you're ready to do more. Good luck! Let me know how it goes.

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    2. Okay! Thank you, I'll try out those three approaches tomorrow morning. Thank you so much, I also have one more question. I don't really know how to do the 'uyajji breath' or activate the 'bhandas', do you have any advice or pointers to give me? As I am unable to attend any ashtanga classes right now, I'm trying hard to start a practice at home so I'm very grateful to your video!

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    3. Bandhas come naturally with correct breathing, so focus on breathing as slowly and smoothly as you can without any strain. The ujjayi sound is created by a slight constriction of the throat, essentially valving the airway in a way that both slows the breath and creates the distinctive ujjayi sound. The sensation is similar to that of a whisper. Practice whispering a bit before you begin your yoga practice to get a sense for the feeling in the throat, and then try to maintain that while you breath through your nose.

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  4. Hey Megan Love your video!
    Great to pair with strength training!

    Thank You So Much

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  5. Hi Megan. I'm Niño from the Philippines. I just started yoga in December 2016. I'd like to thank you for this video which I came across when I searched over at google. I refer to your video at practice twice a day, once in the morning and another in the afternoon, before 6pm. Im feeling the vibe and I am grateful of the inspiration this video is giving me. Thank you so much for sharing that inspiration. Namaste!

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