Namaste Yoga Studio
Patricia A. Dunning, Ph.D., E-RYT 500
Integrative Yoga Therapy Certified
Myrtle Beach, S.C.
(301) 503-0618

How to Practice Asanas.

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  • Check with your physician before starting yoga, pilates, or any other exercise program.
  • Almost every yoga posture can be modified in various ways. Ask you instructor how to modify positions to meet your individual needs.
  • Make sure that you listen to your body! Yoga helps us become aware of our bodes and aware of areas where we encounter resistance. Pay attention and heed the body’s warnings.
  • Remember that you should never compare yourself or your progress with anyone else. Yoga is not a competition. If you just do the best you can – and without straining – then you're doing the posture perfectly. Don’t become impatient when doing the balance poses or any other pose.
  • Flexibility will come. Don’t push the body. Feel the postures, not force.
  • Be aware of bodily sensations and feelings, i.e. feelings not force.
  • Practicing daily will produce the most benefits. This is particularly true for meditation and breathing exercises.
  • Remember that the form of the posture is more important than the actual distance you stretch. You must keep the right form in order to stretch the correct muscles and to align the body correctly.
  • Never compromise your back! Always elongate your back, pressing up from the crown of the head, before you begin to bend or twist.
  • Generally speaking inhale when going into a posture where the chest comes up or is pushed up and out., e.g., the cobra, upward facing dog, backbend, etc. Exhale when the chest is going into a collapsed position, such a forward bend, cat, downward, dog. Etc. When you’re holding a posture, keep breathing in and out. Don’t hold your breath unless your instructor tells you to hold your breath for a specific reason. Sometimes, intermediate and advanced students may learn to incorporate various breathing methods and locks or bandhas with the postures. Do not attempt these without instruction from your teacher.
  • Consult your physician and/or mid-wife before doing yoga asanas, and if they approve, bring their written permission to take yoga to your instructor. If you are more than 3 months pregnant do not do postures that involve lying on your stomach.
  • Pay attention to the energetic extension for each pose as well as the integration time between poses.