New To Yoga?
Here are a few tips for getting started on your yoga journey:
Drink plenty of water BEFORE coming to class. Because all of our classes are heated, you will sweat a lot; so while you may also want to drink water during class, it’s a good idea to hydrate yourself prior to coming to class.
It is best to practice yoga on as empty a stomach as possible. Give yourself a window of at least 2 to 3 hours of not eating prior to yoga practice and try to avoid eating heavy, hard-to-digest meals right before class. This is because of all the movement you do in hatha yoga (the physical practice of yoga). Hatha yoga involves moving the body, elevating the heart rate, twisting, turning, bending forward and back and even going upside down. In order to find harmony in each of these things, the stomach should be as empty as possible. In addition, the less food there is in the digestive track and the less waste there is in the bowels, the more freely moving energy there will be throughout the body.
Take off your shoes and socks for the dual purpose of safety and comfort. Hatha yoga should be practiced bare foot so that you can easily grip the mat with your feet, giving you more stability in your practice. Besides giving you a greater sense of feeling grounded, practicing yoga with bare feet also allows you to stretch out the toes without the restriction of socks.
Go at your own pace. Whether you are new to the practice or not, we always encourage our students to listen to their bodies. Rest is always an option at Yoga by Degrees. The teachers are there to guide you through your practice and give you several options for pushing yourself further or for taking it easy. You decide how much you want to challenge yourself in any given class. Feel like taking a child’s pose for 60 minutes? Be our guest! Or maybe you have tons of energy and want to take every single inversion and arm balance offered in class and that's great, too. This practice is about you, so do what feels good to YOU.
Leave judgment behind. There are no judgments in the yoga classroom. Yoga is a personal and individual practice. Although we come together to practice as a community and share the universal spirit of oneness, we are ultimately working on ourselves. We are only able to work on ourselves from exactly where we are in the present moment. If you are injured, overweight, stressed out, stiff, tight or tired, first recognize that; then, honor what you’re feeling by practicing in a way that best suits what’s going on with you in the present moment. If you have an injury or ailment that will affect your practice, tell the teacher before class so that they can accommodate you.
What to wear? Wear clothes that are light, comfortable, breathable and non-restrictive. You will sweat a lot during class so it’s a good idea to bring an extra set of clothes to change into after class. (Even if you don’t normally sweat during your workouts, since our classes are heated we are betting you won’t be leaving class completely dry). If you’re still not sure what kind of clothing to wear, check out our wonderful boutique full of the latest and very fashionable yoga-specific attire.
What to bring to class? Bring a yoga mat, a towel, a water bottle and a change of clothes. Mats are available for purchase or rent and towels are available for rent in the Yoga by Degrees boutique. We also sell Yogitoes towels which go over your yoga mat in order to prevent you from slipping when the body is moist or sweaty. We have showers in both the men and women’s locker room for your convenience.