FIRST TIMERS

 

YOGA GETTING STARTED

 

Venturing into a yoga studio for the first time may seem intimidating … you don't know what to expect or how it works. But at Austin Kula Yoga the people who teach and attend yoga classes are just like you and me. We all started somewhere,  our instructors sincerely enjoy introducing yoga to others because of its many wonderful benefits. There is a great community feeling at Austin Kula Yoga, and we encourage you to ask questions, especially when you're starting out.

 

The basic tools you will need to start a yoga practice is a yoga mat. This can be purchased at our studio or we offer mat rental.   All the other props like blocks, bolsters, straps and blankets we provide.  On your first visit to Austin Kula Yoga the mat rental is no charge.

 

Where comfortable clothing that you can easily move in. Keep in mind that you'll be moving your body in various positions, so support and coverage are important.

 

The most important things to keep in mind when starting a practice is to learn the foundations of a safe practice, pay attention to your body's cues, have fun and don't get discouraged by what you cannot do those first few months. People come in all sizes, shapes, ages and have different physiological make-ups. What might be beneficial for one person's body may not be good for yours. So, try to refrain from comparing your practice with others. The actual practice of yoga is meant to be a very individualized experience. 

PRIVATE & DUETS

 

Whether you are new to yoga or an experienced yogi our Private & Duet lessons are customized to perfectly suit your needs. You will be taught by an highly trained certified yoga instructor who will give you individual attention on poses, alignment and the practice. The sequence and poses are chosen and developed to meet your specific needs. Learning and practicing postures and breathing exercise at your own pace and with your own range is the most effective way to realize the true power of yoga. The tuition for one 60 minute Private or Duet lesson is $85 or three 60 minute lessons for $225. To schedule a Private or Duet Lesson just email us at admin@austinkulayoga.com or call 512-542-3334 today.

 

DUETS


Bring a buddy and enhance your yoga together. 

 

WHAT TO EXPECT
 

We recommend you start with a Yoga 101 beginners class, an All Levels class or a private lesson.  Generally the class will begin with a few minutes of centering which includes deep breathing, stillness and calming the mind. Some classes will begin by chanting OM, which is a very simple chant with a complex meaning. Om is a mantra affirming the divine presence into a single vibration representing union of mind, body, and spirit. When chanted, the sound of Om is said in three syllables - a, u, and m.

 

Centering is followed by warm-up postures which move into more vigorous postures or supported postures.

 

The practice concludes with the final resting pose, Shavasana or “Corpse” pose. After a brief reawakening of the body, typically students are asked to sit comfortably with eyes closed. The class may end with the teacher announcing Namaste' and the students usually repeat it back or say it at the same time. Namaste' is a term with Indian origin which used in the Western world means, "I bow to the Divine in you."

 

 

STAYING SAFE WHILE PRACTICING YOGA
 

When executed properly and mindfully, yoga is a very safe form of exercise. But, like any other activity, it is not without its risks.  Read these essential tips and fundamentals of a safe practice before you begin.

 

If you are pregnant or have a preexisting health condition, consult with our knowledgeable yoga teachers before class. She can help you discover what type and level of yoga exercise is safe for you. Please Contact Us if you would like a recommendation.


All of our instructors are experienced and credentialed instructor who will teach the proper way to perform the exercises and avoid injury.


Yoga is not a substitute for medical care. Yoga offers many health benefits and may even be included as part of some treatment plans. But it's still important to work closely with your regular health care providers and get proper treatment when you need it.


Know your limits and stay within them. Go slow. You're not in competition with anyone else in the class. Learn the basics, such as proper breathing and how to maintain balance, before you attempt the more ambitious stretches.


Wear clothes that allow you to move freely.


Ask questions. If you don't understand an exercise, ask to see it again before you attempt it yourself.


Stay hydrated. 


Your body is your own best teacher, so honor what it is telling you. Yoga is not supposed to hurt, but you may feel minor discomfort when you stretch parts of your body you haven't moved in a while! However, if you feel pain, stop. Yoga is not about forcing yourself into a pretzel, but rather slow, consistent movement, a balance between Sthira (steadiness/firmness) and Sukha (gentleness/softness).
 

 

FUNDAMENTALS OF A SAFE PRACTICE: 
 

Always warm up. A good general warm-up increases blood circulation to the muscles, lubricates joints and prepares the body to move more deeply into yoga poses. Follow a logical progression by sequencing less strenuous yoga poses for each body part before going deeper. 

 

Use proper alignment. This is essential in yoga and will be covered extensively in our classes. Begin with your foundation, the feet, and work your way up. By properly aligning the body, you reduce excess stress so that muscles and ligaments are strengthened equally on both sides of the active joint. This creates balance and freedom of movement. Correct alignment also alleviates tension in nonworking muscles, allowing you to concentrate on the working muscles, thereby increasing the pose’s benefit. 

 

Avoid hyper-extension. It’s important to keep a slight bend in your knees during standing yoga poses and to keep weight evenly distributed among the “four corners” of their feet. In seated forward bends, place a rolled-up towel beneath the knee of the extended leg or legs. Avoid “popping” your elbows into hyper-extension while in upward-facing dog or any other posture in which you bear weight with the arms. Here’s a good cue to help avoid elbow hyper-extension: “Align the crease of the elbows (without internally rotating the shoulders) so that they face each other.”

 

Use props. Yoga blocks, straps, bolsters and blankets help correct spinal alignment, facilitate proper stretching, take undue stress off joints and support tight muscles so they can release. They allow you to explore the uniqueness of your own body and perform beneficial postures that might otherwise not be good for your body type.  Austin Kula Yoga provides these props for you and will give you instruction on how to use them.

 

Become mindful of your body’s cues. Watch for and listen to the subtle and not so subtle cues your body gives you about how deeply, how strongly and how long you should hold a yoga pose.  By directing your attention inward and listening to what your body is telling you, you can modify poses to suit your individual muscular imbalances.

 

Function over form. In yoga, function is more important than form for gaining health benefits. To gain more function, students can use adaptive techniques to do the pose in a way that requires less strength or flexibility. One useful adaptive technique for flexibility is to slightly bend your arms or legs instead of keeping them fully extended. This enables you to move your spine more easily, which is the focus of many postures and the key to a healthy spine. For example, the primary mechanical function of a standing forward bend is to stretch your lower back. If your hamstring muscles are tight, your hands will have trouble reaching the floor and you may strain your lower back. Instead, simply step your feet out hip width apart and bend your knees until you can comfortably reach your hands on the floor. Gradually begin to straighten your legs until you feel a stretch. Over time you will develop your flexibility and you will remain safe.

 

Sign-up online.  Select your class, make  yourself an account and sign-up online.  This will make your arrival smooth and stress free.