Yoga For Beginners:
7 Basic Yoga Poses For Complete Beginners
Now that you know what yoga is and what it’s good for, you’re probably itching to get started! When you’re just getting started with yoga, it’s a good idea to begin with some standard yoga poses for beginners, so that you can get a feel for things and have a basis for starting some routines. When I first started, I didn’t have the confidence to jump right into a full yoga class and I just needed to find my feet a little. Learning a few basic yoga poses for beginners is the perfect way to begin to ease yourself into yoga, and establish proper basic poses right from the beginning.
As you go through these yoga poses for beginners, try to resist the temptation to push yourself too hard. Remember, at this point the objective is simply to get a feel for yoga and to ease yourself into it. Throughout your yoga journey, always bear in mind that yoga is non-competitive – it’s all about you! Never think you’re not good enough, and don’t fall into the trap of comparing yourself with others. This is one area in life where it’s ok to just think about you! It’s taken me a while to really take this concept on board, but it’s really helpful if you can adopt this mindset right from the beginning.
There’s no really specific requirement for how long these yoga poses for beginners should take you or how often you should do them, just see what you can do to fit them into your life when you can. If you prefer to have something to aim for though, try going through these yoga poses for beginners every day for a week, or every other day two weeks – or just however long it takes for you to start feeling comfortable with them. Remember, this is just something to get you started. Then, when you feel ready to progress, check out my favorite Yoga For Beginners Workouts, or learn 10 more important yoga poses for beginners. From there, you can begin to build up a more structured routine, if that’s what you want. Alternatively, just go with the flow and see where it takes you!
The poses we’re going to learn are my favorite 7 basic yoga poses for beginners:
- Mountain Pose
- Standing Forwards Bend
- Plank Pose
- Downwards Facing Dog
- Child’s Pose
I’ve found that the easiest and most effective way to learn yoga poses is through watching them being performed. Pictures and explanations definitely have their place, but YouTube videos just can’t be beaten when it comes to mastering yoga poses for beginners! I’ve spent a long time choosing the best simple tutorials for these yoga poses for beginners, so you don’t have to! So grab your mat, and let’s get to it…
1) Mountain Pose
Mountain Pose (the proper yoga term is Tadasana) is the most basic pose you can get started with, but there is more to it than meets the eye! This position helps you to feel grounded and focuses your mind on getting your body into the proper alignment. This is the first step in becoming more aware of your body all the time. To do it, stand with your feet roughly hip-width apart and your arms by your sides with palms facing forward. Think about being really grounded, and lift your chest up and out. Here’s a lovely quick and simple video to explain the pose.
2) Triangle Pose
Triangle Pose (Trikonasana) is a side-bending pose which is good for strengthening the back and the core, and also works on improving flexibility in the hips. Stand with your feet about 3ft apart with your toes pointing forward, raise your arms to shoulder height with palms facing down, then bend to bring your right arm down to rest on your right leg or, if possible, on the floor, turning your head to look up at your left arm. (Yoga blocks can also be a good aid in this pose if you struggle to touch the floor – you can read a little about them in my post on putting together your own yoga kit).
3) Standing Forward Bend
The Standing Forward Bend Pose (Uttanasana) is a lovely pose for stretching out the backs of your legs and releasing tension. This is one of my favorite poses, I love the way it feels and the fact that you can go a little further into the pose every time if you practice it fairly regularly. Stand with your feet hip-width apart, and fold over to move your hands towards the floor – you can bend your knees a little if you’re finding it uncomfortable.
4) Plank Pose
Plank Pose (Sampattasana) is fantastic for strengthening your core muscles, and can also help to alleviate stress in the neck and lengthen the spine. In a press-up position, or modified press-up position with your elbows on the floor, engage your abdominal muscles to support you and remain in this position.
5) Downward Facing Dog
Downward Facing Dog Pose (Adho Mukha Svanasana) gives you a nice stretch along the shoulders, hamstrings, and calves. It’s also an energizing pose, and helps to calm the mind. This pose is performed on all fours with your bottom sticking up to put you in a triangle shape!
6) Cobra Pose
Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana) strengthens the arms and wrists by using them to lift the upper body, and also helps to keep the spine flexible. This is another pose that I think feels really nice. Lie down on your front, then bend your arms to bring your hands in line with your chest, palms facing down. As you inhale, push up and raise your head and chest to arch backwards and open up the chest.
You can also start to experiment with a bit of a yoga flow, by transitioning into cobra from a downward facing dog and plank pose…
7) Child’s Pose
Child’s Pose (Balasana) is a nice relaxing pose, and it’s a good one to do after Cobra as it provides a counter-stretch for the spine. It’s a useful pose for recovering from other poses. Start off kneeling, sitting back on your heels, then exhale as you bend forwards towards the floor. You can choose to stretch your arms forwards, or keep them back by your sides.
So there we have it, that concludes my 7 favorite basic yoga poses for beginners! I know starting yoga can feel a bit intimidating, but getting started with this little lot will help to build your confidence and establish a strong foundation on which to build your yoga journey. Before long you’ll feel ready to start putting it all together with a good yoga workout for beginners, or learn other important yoga poses for beginners – but don’t push yourself, take all the time you need just practicing these poses and building your confidence. There’s no rush, yoga will still be there waiting for you whenever you’re ready to move on!
I’d love to know how you get on with these yoga poses for beginners, so please let me know in the comments! If you have any questions I’d love to help, and I’m interested in knowing what your own favorite beginner’s poses are too!
P.S. still looking for your perfect beginner’s yoga kit? You might like this
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