The social media might be glutted with yogis with the flexibility of a sea-lion, but much of it comes under very advanced yoga which is usually quite hard to do. Some students might be very passionate to take up such dedicated courses, but I am sure there are a lot like me who want to keep it very simple: some light yoga with maximum benefits. I am 22 and have just completed my Bachelors in Engineering. For the past year, I had been immured in assignments, projects, studies and applications for further studies, all of which demanded a considerable amount of desk time. I found myself gaining a few kilos, which brought a lot of torpor in my day-to-day activities. I would easily get fatigued and overslept frequently. Damaging my health at 22 resounded in my mind as my motherâ€™s (who is a doctor) dark maxim- â€˜baithe-baithe boodha ho jaayega (you will reach senility if you just keep sitting)â€™.
Startled, I decided to take up a sport. The problem was: all the sporting options required at least another player, a partner. Somehow, this did not materialise for me. I soon began running but the ground was a few kilometres from my hostel which was enough to eventually dissuade me. It was then that I decided to start with a yoga schedule.
How to get started with yogaAlthough the internet is replete with yoga training sessions and videos, it is advisable to take up an instructor if you are going for more advanced asanas. However, if youâ€™re a naive beginner looking for some easy asanas to start with, do not fret, the internet is mostly trustworthy. I was fortunate because a few years ago, I had already taken a yoga class which had given me enough knowledge to formulate a basic yoga routine. The drawback to taking up yoga on an individual basis is that you are doing it unsupervised, which means there is no one to correct your bad postures or tell you what youâ€™re doing wrong. You can also end up spraining your muscles if youâ€™re doing advanced asanas on your own. As a student, this can be critical to your time.
If you lack confidence, you can look for a local yoga group around you (these can be found in nearby public parks) to avoid callous injuries. While joining a group can be fun and motivating, it does have its own schedule so you should gauge your schedule before you join. Also ask around for a certified instructor.
Pick the right yoga mat
Yoga requires minimal accessories but the most important thing to do is to get yourself a yoga mat. It is posited that one should always use the same mat during yoga. Cosmic energy that is radiated from the body gets stored in the mat (quite similar to as in meditation). Yoga mats are easily available online but I had a local textile market nearby from where I was able to get a cotton mat at a fairly decent price. I would recommend against using plastic mats, since you can smell the plastic while doing some exercises. It is a bad distraction and the smell is rather unpleasant.
Choose a time that suits your scheduleWhile there is no specific time as such for yoga, I chose the morning since I was pretty much busy throughout the day. Doing yoga in the morning has the additional benefit that it keeps you active throughout the day, and as the traditional Indians say- the morning air (brahma-vayu) is an elixir for the body. I would get up in the morning at five and freshen up by five-thirty or six. I would generally take a banana and a glass of water before I proceeded with my routine. These are optional and depend on your energy levels as you exercise. You can start without them and decide for yourself in a couple of days. Many such subtle things will be conspicuous to you within a few days, which will help you curate your session better and make it entrenched into your daily life (like your clothing, room temperature etc.).
The same yoga routine can be easily shifted to evening, but make sure to maintain a gap of at least three hours between your lunch and yoga session.