Are you new to Yoga? Perhaps you don’t know where to start from, after rolling that mat! As there are a lot of asanas to practice and each with varied benefits, it is quite challenging for a beginner to decide where to begin.
By following this guide, you can start off with the right poses for beginners.
Yoga is a beautiful gift from the ancient India and now it is widely practiced across the globe as it helps to keep our mind, body and soul rejuvenated. Also, many of yoga poses are easy and beginner friendly.
Why should I practice Yoga?
Yoga refers to a group of physical, mental and spiritual practices. The practice of yoga leads to the union of individual consciousness with the universal consciousness i.e. it indicates a harmony between the Mind, Body, Man & Nature.
These are the benefits of yoga poses/Asanas you will start experiencing:
- Increased Flexibility
- Reduction in Weight
- Enhanced Energy Levels
- Improved Mood and Performance
- Decreased Stress and Anxiety
- A Calm mind
- Improved Quality of Life
Yoga is all about concentration, discipline and deep breathing, you might get a little off-track in the beginning but stick to it and it’ll definitely fall into place.
There are some postures which will help you to start on the right track and if you do them each for 5-10 breaths, they will form your basic beginner’s yoga package.
So, here are 15 awesome yoga asanas/poses for beginners which has some huge benefits for your mind and body:
Mountain Pose/Tadasana/Prayer Pose:
It is a basic asana/pose which forms the base for other yoga practices.
Now you might be wondering, isn’t it just standing? But mountain pose has lots of benefits:
- Improves the posture
- Stimulates the nervous system
- Strengthens your ankles, thighs, arms and legs
- Improves respiration, digestion and blood circulation
To do a Mountain Pose/Tadasana, stand straight with your feet together. Lift your chest and keep your shoulders towards the ceiling. Breathe deeply and hold for 5-7 breaths.
Note: You can either hold your hands at your heart or keep them on the sides.
This is a basic asana/pose which is used to promote balance and centring. It is a one-legged balancing asana and as a result helps you in both physical and mental steadiness.
Benefits of Tree Pose/Vriksasana are:
- Strengthens the ankles and calves
- Tones the abdominal muscles
- Improves the balance and stability of the body
- Builds up self-confidence and esteem
To do a tree pose, begin with the mountain pose (Tadasana) and stand on one leg and bring the other leg to your ankle, shin or thigh and fix your eyes on one rigid point in front of you.
This is a challenging asana with lots of benefits for a beginner. It is a symmetrical asana that works on your body inside and out.
Benefits of Chair pose/Utkatasana are:
- Strengthens the ankles, thighs, calves and spine
- Tones the leg muscles
- Reduces the symptoms of flat feet
- Stretchesthe chest and shoulders
To do a Chair pose/Utkatasana, again begin with a mountain pose/tadasana. Inhale and raise your arms perpendicular to the floor. Bend your knees and get your thighs as parallel to the floor as possible. Keep your shoulder blades firm against your back and hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
This dynamic standing yoga asana utilizes and integrates the muscles of the entire body. It is a ‘Low Lunge Pose’ resembling a divine child. It is a deep stretching yoga pose which gives a powerful stretch to the legs.
Benefits of Crescent Pose/Anjaneyasana are:
- Strengthens the Gluteus Muscles and Quadriceps
- Tones the Lower Body
- Improves your Balance
- Stretches the hips, hip flexors, shoulders, arms, neck and belly.
To do a crescent asana/pose, lunge deeply into the front hip. Move the arms upwards towards the ceiling. There are many variations of this pose, you might find it hard to balance at the beginning but be patient as practice makes you perfect.
This traditional asana/pose will help you for other intense asanas/poses. It is a great position that helps you control and
strengthen your core. It makes you to balance your entire body with the support of your hands.
Benefits of plank pose/phalakasana are:
- Strengthens your Core
- Tones and Tightens your Tummy
- Decreases Back Pain
- Improves Balance
- Boosts Mood and Reduces Stress
To do a plank pose/phalakasana, plant your hands under your shoulders, keep your back straight and pull in your belly button. Hold it for 3-8 breaths and increase when you can!
This asana/pose involves is a gentle flow of stretch for your spine and inner organs. It brings flexibility to the spine and an easy, powerful pose for the mind.
Benefits of Cat-cow pose/Chakravakasana are:
- Stretches the Back, Torso and Neck
- Opens the Chest
- Strengthens the Abdominal Organs
- Increases Coordination and creates Emotional Balance
To do a cow pose, inhale while you drop your belly towards the mat, lift your chin, chest and gaze towards a fixed point on the ceiling.
To do a cat pose, exhale and draw your belly to your spine and round your back towards the ceiling. The pose looks like a cat stretching its back.
Repeat between cat and cow pose for few controlled breaths.
Dog pose/Adha Mukha Svanasana:
It is an inversion ‘resting’ yoga asana. It has become the best-known yoga pose and the easiest one for a beginner.
Benefits of Downward facing dog pose/Adha Mukha Svanasana are:
- Strengthens the Arms and Legs
- Reduces Stress and Calms the Brain
- Opens the chest
- Improves the Posture
To do a downward facing dog pose, inhale deeply and start off on all fours and make sure your knees are slightly behind your hips.
Bridge pose/Setu Bandha Sarvangasana:
It is an inverted back bending asana and you must have seen this pose. Benefits of Bridge pose/Setu Bandha Sarvangasana are:
- Opens Chest, Hip and Heart
- Rejuvenates tired Legs
- Improves Digestion
- Reduces Stress and Calms the Brain
To do a Bridge pose, lie down on your back with your knees bent and feet on the floor. Press your feet and arms firmly and exhale as you lift your hip towards the ceiling.
Garland pose is called as yoga’s deep squat asana. This yoga is a great way to loosen tight hips (for people who sit for long time) and challenge your balance.
Benefits of Garland pose/Malasana are:
- Opens your Hips and Groin
- Increases Circulation and Blood flow in Pelvis
- Regulates Sexual Energy levels
- Tones your Abdominal muscles and Aids in Digestion
To do a Garland pose, begin with tadasana/mountain pose, step your feet as wide as you can, bend your knees and lower your hips.
Triangle pose/ Utthita Trikonasana:
This asana combines many elements in one posture and has various physical and mental health benefits to the body. Benefits of Triangle pose/Utthita Trikonasana are:
- Strengthens Legs, Knees, Ankles, Abdominals, Back and Oblique muscles.
- Reduces Stress and Anxiety
- Improves Digestion
- Stretches Hamstrings, Groins and Hips.
To do the triangle pose, begin with Tadasana/Mountain pose, step your feet wide apart and turn your foot to 90 degrees, raise your arms and reach your right arm to your right foot direction. Repeat the same with your Left Leg.
This is another easy asana for beginners which prepares you for deeper backbends and strengthening the back of legs, arms and torso. Though it may seem like a simple pose but, it is challenging and interesting. Benefits of Locust Pose/Salabhasana are:
- Strengthens the Muscles of Spine and Buttocks
- Improves Posture
- Reduces Stress
- Increases Sexual Stimulation
To do the locust pose, lie on your stomach with arms on the side. Inhale and raise your head back. Then slowly lift your chest and arms as you exhale. Use your inner thighs to lift your legs up towards ceiling. Hold for a minute and then slowly release your back.
This is another easy yoga asana and should be performed either on empty stomach or after meal. It is the best pose to practice breathing exercises and meditation.
Benefits of Diamond pose/Vajrasana are:
- Helps to keep the Mind Calm and Stable
- Aids in Digestion
- Strengthening Thigh Muscles
- Relieves Back pain.
To do a diamond pose, fold your legs backwards and keep your spine, neck and head straight, rest your hands on the knees, look in the front and inhale.
This asana imitates the lions roar. It can be easily done by beginners and has extraordinary benefits. Benefits of Lion Pose/Simhasana are:
- Reduces tension in the Face and Chest
- Increases Circulation of Blood to the face
- Prevents Sore Throat, Asthma and other Respiratory Ailments
- Improves Health of Eyes
To do the Lion pose, begin with Vajrasana, inhale deeply, open your mouth wide and stick out your tongue as far as possible while exhaling forcefully.
Sphinx pose/Salamba Bhujangasana:
This asana imitates the infant and again can be easily done by beginners. Benefits of Sphinx Pose/Salamba Bhujangasana are:
- Strengthens the Spine
- Stretches Chest, Lungs, Shoulders and Abdomen
- Helps in Firming the Buttocks
- Reduces Stress
To do a Sphinx pose, lie on the stomach and keep your legs close, stretch your hands in the front with palms facing downwards, slowly lift your head, chest and abdomen while keeping your navel on the floor, keep breathing and then release slowly.
It is a reclining back-bending asana and is known for its ability to increase flexibility.
Benefits of Cobra Pose/Bhujangasana are:
- Stretches Muscles in Shoulders, Chest and Abdominals
- Increases Flexibility
- Strengthens Arms and Shoulders
- Reduces stiffness of the back and strengthens the Spine.
To do a Cobra pose, lie on the stomach, stretch your legs, lift your chest up off the ground, gaze upwards and keep your abdominal engaged.