Yoga for Beginners. A Guide To Get Started. Aka how NOT to bend yourself into a pretzel... | Eva Schroeder | Skillshare

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Yoga for Beginners. A Guide To Get Started. Aka how NOT to bend yourself into a pretzel...

teacher avatar Eva Schroeder, Yoga teacher & Student of Life

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

7 Lessons (23m)
    • 1. Welcome!

    • 2. 1) Your Monkey Mind

    • 3. 2) My 7 Top Secrets

    • 4. 3) A Clever Guidance System called Pain

    • 5. 4) Move with your breath.

    • 6. 5) Discover symmetry and balance

    • 7. Final thoughts to wrap up.

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About This Class

In this short 25mins tutorial class, I'll explain how you can get started with practicing Yoga today - before you step onto the mat. I share with you some of the principles I teach my beginners Yoga students when they first come to class. It can also serve as a nice reminder for anyone who's been practicing Yoga for a while.

During these 5 short and sweet sessions I'll talk you through some of the things we want to remember as we dive deep within to ask ourselves how we actually approach our practice - and typically that corresponds to how we approach our lives (#foodforthought). 

This class is for you, if you've never set a foot into a Yoga class before, you're unsure and maybe even somewhat intimidated or scared of the unknown of what it's all about. And that's totally understandable, but - I've got your back. Worry not.

My aim is that at the end of this class you'll have found a clearer picture as well as the confidence and excitement to start practicing.

Remember that a "Beginners Mind" is a beautiful thing to live as it encourages us to look at all angles and embrace all challenges in a new and exciting way. Whereas "advanced" Yoga isn't so much the ability to bend into incredible shapes and forms (*ie pretzels). More importantly than that - it's about using every single moment to breathe and move consciously, to stay centred and patiently draw your wandering monkey mind back to your practice, and back into the present moment. 

It may sound easier as it is, and it's a life long journey of discovering and unraveling the beautiful layers within us.

If you've got any questions at all, I'm very happy to chat. Just message, comment, smoke signal or whatever way you'd like to get in touch.

Meet Your Teacher

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Eva Schroeder

Yoga teacher & Student of Life


What strange times we find ourselves in. Times that call us all to stop, more than ever, to breathe, to become still. To notice the mind "stuff", notice the feelings and emotions, the way we react to what we're facing. To find balance. In all areas of your life.

Take this surreal, incredible opportunity to tune inwards, to journey inside of yourself, to elevate consciousness. And in the meantime, let our world recover and take a breath as well...

If you feel stressed or overwhelmed by the happenings of the past months, here's my invitation to you: 

Breathe deeply.

Take a deep belly breath IN.
And a deep long breath OUT.
Repeat that 3 times. Do it now.

Then let your breath fall to a more natural rhythm again. A... See full profile

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1. Welcome!: Hi, everyone and big, huge Thank you for being here today. I want to share with you some things to consider and maybe contemplate before diving into your practice. And you'll also get idea off where and how I can potentially support you on your way to feeling stronger, get injured less, recover quicker and just I feel so much better in your body and in all areas of your life. Hopefully. So whenever I have a new student come into my class, there are so many things I want to share right away, right at the start, but open. Usually there are only 60 minute in that one hour that we usually got together. So I thought I'd simply record a few things for you to dahlia in before your first practice . You're hopefully going to learn a lot of new things. Some things may be obvious. Some others, not so much on what I'm really excited about it. It's really up to you to decide whether and what you take it on board. If you're completely new to yoga, take it easy. There's absolutely no need to take it all on board at once. Just watch the clips ones referred back to them. Even when you're inspired to do so, it won't always be easy, but you can totally do this promise. Just focus and falling, committed and, above all, take consistent actions by getting into a routine off, tuning into your body, getting onto him at and practice and really can change your life forever. So I created the following five clips to serve you as a guy to lead you through the start off your experience on them at what's getting to know your body a little bit better and connect to yourself on a slightly deeper level. If you've got any questions whatsoever, please get in touch. I'm here to help you stay also, lots of love on Enjoy Bye for now. 2. 1) Your Monkey Mind: So this 1st 1 is all about noticing when the famous monkey mind is taking over in your head just before getting on your math. But also balls to you are practicing thoughts like I can't do that. I'm not strong enough to do this. I'm not flexible flexible enough to do this. If you're completely, completely new to yoga, cut yourself some slack. You really take it easy. You may be unfamiliar with yoga postures or coordinating the breathing or just unaware of how tricky it sometimes is to get one from one point to another from A to B on your mouth. And don't get frustrated and just allow yourself to discover what it's all about. The new first session. I'm simply do as much as you can without forcing yourself into a stretch, and then I'll invite you to focus on this one thing. How you feel at the beginning and compare that to how you're feeling at the end. And that's all. And in terms of anything in between, do not worry about where you are right now. Don't worry how flexible or inflexible you are. Simply enjoy moving. Enjoy discovering a new relationship with your body. The fact that you're on your map practicing it's a huge step may be the biggest step that you can do. And you've already done that to give you a sight of self a little, a little pat on you're back. And if any negative or frustrating thoughts do show up, he is the trick. So catch them when they're happening. Really? Step back mentally. No, they're just that thoughts. They're not you and quite possibly not even a true reflection off your reality. At that point, so many students I speak to say to me, Oh my God, I must be the least flexible person on the planet Apart from the fact that it does not matter how flexible you are compared to anyone else in the room or on the planet, I've seen a lot off students, and most of the time they're not even close to being that inflexible. So immediately catch it that thought, turn it into question and instead, ask yourself, What can I do right now that will help me take just one step closer to certain posture? Or do I maybe have to take a step back towards a stronger foundation? First so the easiest thing is to simply breathe. Can you find a way to breathe a little easier? More controlled? A little smoother? Maybe. And then there's the endgame. Question sees so many times we seem to be having only that end game in mind, though, the secret is to simply discover where you are right now and then start from there and then work step by step until you slowly, slowly catchy monkey work your way into an expression off the post, which works for you at that time and again that that's regardless of how it looks like in other people and regardless off where the person next to you is doing so. If along the way you're starting to identify with your thoughts off not being good enough or flexible enough or thinking about this doesn't work for you all. You never see the benefits of it. Get right back into onto Matt out of your head back into your body. Don't allow these thought patterns to strengthen, and instead cut yourself some slack. Be kind to yourself. Slow it down, breathe And, as I said earlier, focus on simply noticing the difference between how you feel before and after your practice . You just perfect wherever you are 3. 2) My 7 Top Secrets: So you're on a yoga mat and suddenly realize it's not all about sitting cross legged and competing with your next door mat neighbor. You realize that as easier. Some of the positions may look. They can actually be very tricky to get into. And even worse, once he managed to catapult yourself into that post actually, really tough to hold and strong for a song. Was a teacher ask you to? You feel totally out of sync when it comes to bring them physically hurts to even try to get into a position. Yeah, as you tend to let it vaguely resemble what seemingly everyone else in the room manages gracefully or effortlessly to do. And then to top things up. The yoga teacher. And I must admit, I like saying at this well tells you to soften your face. I might be exaggerating a little here. I have had some students who appearance was quite different from what they had expected before they came to class. So my first invitation is for you to let go of any expectations and just come as you are simply you with all of your strength, but also with Olive, all of you weaknesses. As they said in the first look, leave self doubt at the door. Noticed any limiting judgmental or any negative thoughts coming up, acknowledge them and then just focus on your practice again. I encourage you to really step into that challenge. It won't be long until you get familiar with the basic shapes off the postures and the sequences that we move through. And then you can start to focus on your breathing on moving more consciously. And then along the way you'll find the strength and the ease, and you'll find more effortless movement again, more easy to breathe Indian freely and and fully again. And that's what everything it's practice, practice, practice. So what do you do when you're faced with a challenging situation? Within your practice, you want to be finding a solid foundation first, always scare and your body, and listen to the cues that your teachers giving you. There's a post cold boat post, for example, or even plank pose if we're not used to holding it. Our body, my direct, was shaking a little. It's right at that point where you know you're close to or at your edge, you monkey mind may start to totally freak out, but again, can you observe this happening? Can you step back and then started? Find a gentle gaze between focusing on your breath nice and control long inhalations and exhalations, always staying with your breath. So that's exactly where you started. Grow where you started gets stronger, more disciplined and more focused as well. We're changing our muscular design and altering their chemistry in our body. Let go of your expectations off yoga. Being a walk in the park by can sometimes be a tough, sweaty spend through the hills. It may be a comfortable, but do you know it's totally worth it. Another examples are stretches we move into after activating the muscle first, so the sensation will feel much stronger, much more intense. And this will make more sense once you start experiencing this in these these sanctions within your practice, so see whether you can stay with them, notice when you're when you're resisting, moving deeper into a stretch or whether you grouping and holding on super tight. So I wanted to consider to start celebrating thes sensations. We call it Grateful Pain that discomfort start loving it later on I'll talk a bit more about the different sensations, especially in terms of bad pain and good, plain and again grateful pain that actually feels really good if you start to reframe things in your mind. So when you're in an intense stretch, take a deep breath and as you exhale, see where they can surrender into that stretch again, we embrace it. Soften. I feel so delicious. It deliciously been. When you get to that point where you stop holding on and simply allow your body to let gallon, just relax. A little bit more less of the gripping, a little bit more peace. It feels like you gently sinking into a soft, more comfortable cushion, won off the big memory from mattresses. You feel safe and held. And that's three point where your body moves out of that. That fight and flight state of you know of a system where you slowly started, open up and find a greater range of movement, and then one day you'll get to the point where you can more consciously relax whenever you get the chance to. If you know what it feels like to activate and then relax the muscles, the muscles in your body and then rinse and repeat in all the other posh is it's a beautiful continues flow off communication with the new body and your mind, and every time you find more precision, you find more control. You started. Hold yourself differently. You may even grow physically as you Santel. I grew about two centimeters in my practice. Grow more confident in yourself, more grounded and yes, for the stronger cool with and yet soft and flexible on the outside. Believe me, change is happening the moment you step onto him out. Change can be scary, and it's uncomfortable not just mentally also physically there. Remember all times that you creating positive change in your life but cultivating that laser beam like focus and concentration and reframing the discomfort that that the Grateful Pain as a good sign on the benefits that come with a consistent practice with soon become more parent in your life. So stick with it, follow through and never, never, ever, quit on yourself 4. 3) A Clever Guidance System called Pain: my big points on pain. So when it comes to pains so many times that here runners say, Oh, I'll just run through It'll be okay again, obviously in the depends on the level of pain that people are dealing what when I do that, but it totally frustrates me. Why would you want to do that? Chiefs out. Why would you want to ignore your body, let alone thinking about how much longer it's probably going to take you to recover? Well, how much longer you gonna be running with that pain? It's mind boggling. So it's totally the opposite off what I teach, as you can imagine, because I believe that if and when you are unfamiliar with the subtleties off the different sensations within your body and you just keep pushing through, you will be doing yourself a huge disservice. So the whole thing is, in fact, very simple and should really be obvious. But I'm still amazed by how many runners, still actually, totally again, as I said, ignored the science that bodies are sending them and their body is sending us these signals all the time. There are quite a few subtleties when it comes to these signals are sensations Neagle's eggs and pains. So there's the more grateful pain in this, the bath pain in a gazillion sensations or signals in between. So how can you start to differentiate between them all? It's going back to the good old listen to your body. There's, for example, muscular pain or discomfort that simply happens to your lack of use or overuse. After big training sessions, for example, it's usually del feeling, yet it can often be quite deep, a swell on I call ungrateful pain. It's a result of your body moving into arrange that it's not that it's just not used to anymore. So you're simply in the process of moving to or maybe beyond your edge a little bit. So that's the good kind of pain, nothing to worry about. In fact, in the yoga practice, that's probably what we want to be a feeling. We want to move towards our edge and to find that openness there and then also find the strength of other to maintain it. And then there's also the kind of pain that you do not want to feel the kind of pain that risks turning into an injury almost likely has already When on if you feel it and you'll know it when you feel it, is it a sudden, sharp pain that you're feeling? Yeah, when you step beyond body Body was happy to do at that particular point, it seems like obvious advice. But if that happens, stop immediately back up out of the posture. And if you don't know what's just happened, it may be good at a later point at that point to you haven't looked at. So when working, sort of the videos on this side, we do not want to experience this about pain. So I really encourage you to dive in and listen to what your body is telling you. Really Dive indeed. Take back responsibility off your own actions, your own body. Move with precision and that control. Give yourself some help along the way and just take it easy if it doesn't feel good. And I don't mean that challenging kind of pain, which actually really like. So if it doesn't feel good, don't do it. If it's too much, especially if you feel any bad pain moving in, simply stop there. Rewind, step back and slowly work your way up again until new body is is ready to move further. You'll soon be very good at reducing and working without discomfort that you may be feeling on experiencing. And even better, you'll be able to embrace the sensation as such and maybe even start to really enjoy that feeling. As we said in the previous cook. So take your time. Be patient, keep believing. Remember, you are getting stronger with every little bit that you do every little work that you do on your mat. Um, so, yeah, enjoy. 5. 4) Move with your breath.: So we briefly mentioned earlier this endgame focus that a lot of us half so the urge to reach our goals as soon as possible. However, apart from the obvious risk of injury that comes along with pushing and forcing ourselves, we're gonna be missing out on a boat off sweet and juicy steps on a journey that really build our foundation for all strength a little. I don't be showing you some off the amazing mechanisms our bodies have. Until then, please, never, ever force yourself into a stretch. You gotta understand that when you do that, you're working against your bodies mechanisms which are most likely going to result in your body further tightening or tensing up. Instead, we want to move with and always be connected to a breathing. What exactly does that mean? So every move in our practice has either and in hell on excel attached to it. It will become obvious to you along the way. But a rough going down into when to breathe in and out is to look at it like that. Every time we move forward or up, we breathe in, and every time we move back or down, we breathe out. So let's try this out together right now. The wrong way round first, first run. Begin, help! And that's the Excel. Bring your arms up. And then in hell bringing homes by your side again. Second round this way. This time we're gonna go in hell me charms up on excel. Bring alms, Biocyte. So, did you notice a difference? Try tried another few times. Take a few deep breath wells reaching arms up and then breathe out as you relax your arms by your side. So there are many exceptions to to this. And you obviously want to keep breathing when the whole positions. But I'll talk you through these and the actual work that we're doing on the mat. 6. 5) Discover symmetry and balance: this last one is all about finding symmetry and balance in all bodies. So last but not least, I want to start to demystify what it is that we actually doing on the mat. I get asked a lot by students or potential students before they even come into my classes that I have no clue what to expect, what they're doing, what it's all about. And they tend to unload a number off Neagle's and eggs and pains. And then there's obviously the big question. I worry I can't even touch my toes. As we said before, every single body is different and comes with its on makeup, its own set off, different habits and routines, muscular patterns and imbalances as well. In order to move back into our optimal form, we want to be counter. We want to counter the imbalance in our body and bring it back into balance back into harmony, and it doesn't mean you'll have to be able to touch your toes. However, with consistent practice or committed practice, you almost likely be able to do so. If that's you go. But don't rush it. Just take it easy. This really absolutely no reason why we need to rush things if you think about it. Took us, however many years, yeah, to move into the shape or to come into the shape informed up in now. Basically, it's also a swells mentally through our lifestyles, sitting out desk, hunching forward in all that, and so it will take a little while to get back to that optimal form. So no need to rush. As I said earlier, be patient. Know you're on the right path. Whilst cultivating a sense off equanimity is a calm and steady mind, you may have noticed that very difficult to speak about strength without moving into the flexibility or mobility side of things. That's because by using strength work to move back into balance, you automatically open up in other areas of your body as well. So looking at this hunched forward desk position that a lot of us work in all living, what happens is that the muscles in your packs two chest muscles contract chronically. These fibers themselves don't strictly speaking out shorten as such there other elements at play here, but they simply contract, which is the nature of elastic muscle tissue on debt continues state obviously has an effect on the whole rest of your body as well. The fasher within your body, which is a little less elastic, the bones, the nervous system. It affect your moves, our confidence, everything. So what also happens is that the muscles in your upper back start to lengthen or chronically overstretch. So you can imagine that at one point they started, just get tired on and stop contracting so powerful. So, for example, in order to find that balance again and open up in your chest and your shoulders, what we'll do is focus on strengthening the muscles in your upper back. So those muscles then draw the shoulder blades together, for example, which can automatically helps to lengthen the muscles in your chest back into the natural length. We will move through a balance off, both still focusing on strengthening and lengthening and relaxing and just really giving ourselves permission to let girl off the attention within. However, I suppose the point I'd like to bring across yet is that there is a certain symmetry in our bodies that we can use as a benchmark. So by simply taking a visual approach yourself, you will know and see when you're doing things right. If you want to have a look in the mirror, you see exactly that. So maybe one more example here when stretching to the site. So when you're lifting an arm and reaching over to the side, do you want to lengthen one side without collapsing into the other side? So lift up. Look always for that that openness and length in your spine, and also for that healthy relationship to your hips and your pelvis as well. So until we can get back into that symmetry and balance in our physical body, let's taken internal approach. You will cultivate the ability to know to feel if and when it just doesn't feel right or again. If it feels really good. Thank you so much. Bye for now. 7. Final thoughts to wrap up.: So let's wrap it up here. So the five key points to remember Wells going through your practice be aware of the thoughts that have renting space in your head. Turn any negative self talk. Any mental struggles into question. Ask yourself, How can I move? How can I breathe to find more ease? How can m breeze deeply to through the intensity off the post? Whatever position I'm in, cultivate an awareness to tune in a little deeper each time you're stepping onto a map with a clear and focused mind you without any judgments or expectations. Unapologetically, you number to celebrate the discomfort. Embrace it. Get excited about it so often into the struggle. Put a real smile on your face. And don't beat yourself up about how weak our hunt flexible you think you are. Never let your monkey mind take you down. No, you on the right path to strength and grows spaciousness within an even more wholesomeness because that's what you are. Number three different shades good from the bad pain, often very obvious but often ignored. Learn to differentiate and read the signals your body is sending you all of the time. Any points are you practice your training as well as in your whole life. It's a powerful guidance system that would be silly. Teoh. Ignore and not take advantage off number four listening and never, ever force yourself into a statue. Always move with your breath controlled, precise movements. Never push yourself through pain, but listen in to work with your body's clever mechanisms to deepen. The stretch is safely number five. Symmetry and balance. Start tuning in a notice where in your body you notice any imbalances so you can more regularly tune into that that area and work on them always in combination with the whole body and as a result, move slowly back into your natural shape and form. I really hope this helps you get you're going on your journey to more ease more strength within your body, as well as a available space and peace in your mind. No, there's nothing to worry about when coming to class and be yourself. Enjoy moving and enjoy joining thousands of yoga practitioners who already reaping the benefits off the practice. Thank you so much. Bye bye