These are simple and definitive guide to beginners aspiring to do yoga exercises in their own space, usually alone. For a beginner, doing Yoga postures is a completely different exercise one that need to be introduced little by little, week by week as you integrate more complex postures gradually.
The goal is to learn basic movements first, one at a time. Then you can link the movements together. Moreover, we have designed one month programme that combines various poses from basic to complex poses which are introduced week-by-week to kick-start your routine. Remember, these are not cast on stone, and can be modified to suit your individual goals and needs anytime;
First week: Stretches for Warm-Up
Before you start these poses, you need to start with the breathing routine that we discussed earlier. Also these stretches form the foundation of all the yoga postures that you will eventually build up to.
Seated Neck Stretches
The basic neck stretches.
- inhale as you slowly lift your chin allowing your front neck be stretched.
- As you exhale, let your chin be lowered and also allow the back of your neck to be stretched.
- This stretch must be repeated at least five times.
- Let the head be lowered to the left side as you exhale
- Let the right side of your neck be stretched
- And then return to the center, while you inhale.
- Let you head be lowered to the right side and exhale.
- And then let the left side of the neck be stretched.
- This stretch must be repeated at least five times.
- A complete rotation of the neck must be performed
- Lower the chin as you exhale.
- Lift the chin as you inhale.
- The neck complete rotation must be done in both clockwise and counter-clockwise direction
- Each side rotation must be repeated at least three times.
Make sure to ONLY move within your range of motion and avoid over-stretching the neck.
Seated Shoulder Stretches
- Let the fingertips of both hands be placed on your shoulders. As you keep the elbow joints closed.
- The elbows must be lifted up and in as you inhale.
- When you exhale let the elbows be brought apart and down.
- The entire range of motion of the shoulder joint must be rotated.
- This routine must be repeated three times rotating in the opposite direction.
- the right elbow must be lifted towards the ceiling.
- the right hand must be placed behind the head, reaching down towards the upper back.
- The right elbow must be gently pulled to the left using your free hand as comfortable as possible.
- This stretch must be held for five breaths
- The same routine must be done on the other side.
- This routine can be repeated 6 times alternating sides.
Seated Spinal Warm-up
- Let your chest be lifted as you begin to comfortably walk the hands forward as far as you possibly can. In your seated position.
- The back must be kept as straight as possible.
- This position must be held for five breaths.
- And then, the hands must be pushed in and the tailbone tucked in,
- Let the lower back be stretched
- another five breaths must be held in this position and walk the hands back in.
- walk the hands out to the left side as you fold forward.
- right side of the back is stretched
- this position must be held for three breaths
- and then do the same using the other side.
- the right hand placed on the left knee while the left hand is placed on the floor behind you, be careful to keep the spine straight.
- Breathe in, gently twist to the left while exhaling.
- This position is to be held for three breaths and then breathe in again while you return to center.
- the same routine must be done, alternating sides.
Standing Hip Warm-up
- more than hip-width apart, stand with the feet.
- the arms must be reached out to the side as you breathe in.
- start to tip over to the right side as you breathe out, the right hand must be reached towards the right shin, and the left side of the body shall be stretched also.
- Breathe in and return to the starting position
- The routine must be repeated on the other side.
- This stretch must be repeated three times.
- Start with the feet hip-width apart. Perform gentle hip rotations, making a big circle with the hips. Repeat 3 times in each direction. Take the feet a bit wider and repeat three more times in each direction.
Second Week: Basic Yoga Poses
After one week of practicing to stretch in various position, you are now read for some basic yoga postures. All these postures are tabletop positions;
This position is done while maintaining the tabletop position.
- Keep your knees directly underneath the hips and the hands under the shoulders.
- While you breathe in, your tailbone must be tipped up and back.
- Let the belly be lowered towards the floor.
- Let the chest be lifted and let your gaze be raised slightly.
- While you breathe out, let the tailbone be tucked under and round the back.
- Be careful to keep your shoulder blades spread as you keep the head relaxed towards the floor.
- This movement must be repeated five times.
Downward Facing Dog
You need to be on the tabletop position;
- Let the toes be tucked under and the hips lifted up and back.
- the hands must be pressed into the floor,
- let your spine be extended as you let the heels move in the direction of the floor.
- Let each of your knees bend in turn while little walking motions are made with your legs.
- The straightening of your legs is to be started after you feel limber. And the heels must be pressed towards the floor.
- bending the knees slightly and drawing the chest towards the floor will enhance more stretch into the back.
Extended Child’s Pose
Still in your tabletop position.
- Keep your knees more than hip-width apart position, and let the tailbone go under the heels.
- your arms must reach forward, as you get your hands placed on the floor, face your palms down.
- Take a deep breath into your back, make sure you’re your trunk is stretched with every breath.
- This position must be held for five to ten long breaths.
while maintaining the tabletop position;
- Let your two feet be stepped back so as to make the body straight from head to foot completely.
- with both your hands, press strongly into the floor.
- the shoulder blades must be spread wide.
- the stomach must be kept firm as you keep breathing.
- While doing this pose, please give it five breaths per round.
while maintaining the tabletop position;
- Be in a plank position as you breathe in.
- bring the right knee to the right elbow as you round the back.
- return to the plank position while you breathe in.
- repeat the same routine using the left side.
- The whole routine can be repeated three times alternating side.
Third Week: Basic Yoga Poses
This week we will do spine and hips poses in a more complex way varying it with gentle backbends and twists;
- Lie down on your stomach.
- As you breathe in, let your body be pressed into the floor along with your ribcage.
- Let your chest be lifted up and forward, while the hips are kept on the floor.
- Get your back lowered down as you breathe out.
- this movement can be repeated a few more times, be careful to ensure your back is arching a little bit more each time.
- the pose can be held for three breaths on the final time while you lower yourself when you breathe out.
This pose is done while you are on a downward facing dog position
- the right foot must be lifted up and back while you breathe in.
- your right hamstring must be engaged while reaching towards the back of the room.
- your hips must be kept square to the front of the room
- hold for three breaths and then let the right knee be bent
- let the hips be opened up to the right side.
- Let the front of the right hip stretched through.
- This pose must be held for three breaths.
- And then you should breathe out as you return to the downward facing dog.
- Alternate the pose for the other side.
This posture is done in while you lie on your back;
- Let the left knee be bent while the left foot is placed on the floor and heels drawn towards the left sitting bone.
- the right heel must be placed across the left thigh. The knee must fall out to the side.
- Try to reach out to the left thigh with both hands as comfortable as possible. And then let the left knee be drawn towards the body.
- the head and shoulders must be kept in contact with the floor
- taking deep breaths five to ten breaths and then repeat the routine alternating side.
This one is done while lying down on your back.
- Get your knees bent as the feet are placed on the floor. The heels are drawn towards the sitting bones.
- Your arms must be reached out to the sides.
- the hips must be picked up
- the hips must be moved slightly to the left allowing your knees to fall over to the right side.
- And then, settle toward the floor, gently.
- The position must be held for five to ten breathes
- Alternate side as you repeat the routine.
Fourth Week: Simple Standing Poses
We have compiled some of the simple standing poses which are good for strength building in the legs. More importantly, these poses can be linked together into one workout.
Linking this with the downward facing dog;
- the right foot must step forward between the hands while the left heel is lowered to the floor,
- make your foot turn 90 degrees out.
- And then into a long lunge, you can stand up
- the chest must be squared towards the side of the room and the arms reaching out to opposite ends of the room.
- This position must be held for three to five breaths.
- Breathe out while placing the hands on the floor
- and then resume to your downward facing dog.
- Alternate side as you repeat the pose.
This pose is linked to the warrior two;
- the front leg must be straightened. Carefully bend your knee slightly.
- While you breathe out, the body must be tipped to the right. Allow your right hand to reach towards the shin while the left hand is pointing towards the ceiling.
- the back must be straight, while opening the chest towards the side of the room.
- Take five breaths and then go back to your warrior two pose as you breathe in.
- This position can be repeated as you continue to alternate sides.
This pose also is started from the warrior two;
- As you breathing in, let your right forearm on the right thigh while the left arm is reaching up and forward,
- Let the left side of the body be stretched and allow your chest to open up towards the side of the room.
- Hold the pose for five breaths and then return to your initial pose (Warrior Two) as you breathe out.
- Repeat the pose alternating the sides.
For this pose, It’s best to have a yoga block.
- your right hand must be placed on a yoga block six to 12 inches in front of your right foot.
- the weight must be brought into your right foot.
- lift your back leg off the floor while you inhale, and all the weight must be brought into your right foot and right hand.
- Let your hips be opened and chest must be up to the side of the room.
- and then allow your back leg to be lifted as high as you possibly can lift it. lift your back leg as high as you can.
- This position must be held for three to five breaths before you return to Warrior Two pose and breathe out.