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Beginner Yoga Poses

If you have never done yoga before, even these beginner yoga poses may seem difficult. When you watch other people in basic yoga poses, yoga looks easy. Many people find that it is harder than it looks. Be sure to do the two warmups first.

Yoga  warm ups

If you want to try yoga at home, you will need a yoga mat or a rug that will not slide out from under you. Wear loose, comfortable, stretchy clothing. You should be in bare feet. For our two warm ups, you need a wall.

yoga warm upThe first warm up stretches your arms, shoulders, and the hamstring muscles at the back of your thighs.

Move your feet back far enough to feel your arms stretch as you pull your buttocks back away from the wall.

Point your buttocks toward the ceiling until you feel the hamstrings stretch.

Hold the pose for at least 20 seconds, and longer if you can.

yoga warm up

The second warm up builds strength in your arms and shoulders  as it stretches your calf muscles.

Leave your feet in the same position they were for the first warm up. Put your forearms on the wall and drop your buttocks toward the wall.

Hold the pose for at least 20 seconds, and longer if you can.

Without moving your feet, continue to alternate between the two warm up poses for several minutes, until your major muscle groups are warmed up.

Beginner yoga poses for flexibility

The next two poses, cat and cow, improve flexibility in your spine. Alternate between the two positions, holding each pose for one breath.

cow pose

Inhale on cow:

cat pose

Exhale on cat:

Balance pose

tree pose

Tree pose is a good pose for improving your balance. You can put your foot on your calf or up on the inner thigh. Do not put it on the knee joint.

If you like, raise your arms above you like the branches of a tree, or in a prayer position.

Standing poses

triangle pose

In triangle pose, your torso should be parallel to the wall. You can rest your hand on a block or rest it on the inside of your leg.

chair pose

In chair pose, your weight should be back on your heels as much as possible.

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