Mindbody

Download the app

The MINDBODY app

Fitness memberships, workout classes, wellness services, beauty appointments and more.

Install
beginners guide yoga denver
Fitness
Published Monday Sep 09, 2019 by Karstee Davis

The Beginner’s Guide to Yoga

Yoga
Personal Growth
Expert Advice

After taking a hiatus from yoga for quite a bit of time this year, I recently found myself back on my mat, and let me tell you; I feel like a beginner. But here’s the difference; because I had already developed my practice, there are things I know that a true beginner to yoga might not. 

So, I've decided to share these ten tips in case you find yourself like me;—coming to yoga for the first time—or as a reminder if it’s just been a really long while.

 

Come hydrated! 

There were many times in the initial days of my practice where I would leave class feeling so thirsty. It didn’t take me long to realize the problem—I wasn’t properly hydrated, and to make matters worse, I sweat a lot in class. To make hydration a priority, I invested in a 32 oz hydro flask. I take it with me everywhere, and I have a goal every day to drink at least two of them. The best part of all is it stays cool even in the hottest of classes!

 

If your studio doesn’t have props, invest in some—or get creative! 

Props are essential to my practice, but I didn’t know this until I started doing teacher training. Now I know that, I need a block in every class—no matter which kind of class I’m taking. And if it’s a yin/restore/nidra class, then I need at least one bolster. Other props that help take my practice to the next level include sandbags, eye covers, straps, and blankets. Also, don’t be afraid to get creative—rolling up a towel or a blanket can often sub for a block or a bolster. But if you have the extra funds, start building your own collection. This is useful for classes outside of the studio too – like in the park, or at home.

 

Don’t come to class with a full belly. 

Nothing is worse than finding yourself in gorilla pose with a burrito in your belly. So not fun. If you have to eat right before class, try to digest something light, like a salad or protein shake. Trust me; when your gut feels good, you will have a great practice.

 

Change it up!

Don’t be afraid to try styles of yoga that are new to you. From hatha to vinyasa to power flow, you will never know what is best for you if you don’t at least venture out and try new things. If it’s not for you, then don’t go back or try it one more time, but with a different teacher (or at a different studio). Sometimes altering how and where you practice makes all the difference!

 

Find an instructor you like (or love!) 

Make a note of teachers whose style(s) you like and then go to their classes more often! Some instructors lead flows at different studios, so remember to check out their schedule. Also, don’t be afraid to be front and center in their classes and let them know you are a fan of their practice.  Finding a teacher that resonates will help keep you coming regularly. 

 

Find a time that works best for YOU and then make it a priority. 

When I was first getting into a routine, I’d sometimes let other people’s schedules take precedence over my own, which is a horrible way to go about making something a habit. Instead, be super intentional about your week. Add classes to your calendar and make plans around that—don’t sacrifice time with yourself on the mat for other things. Taking time for you will help you show up and be more present for the people in your life. And, if it feels right, you can always invite friends or family to meet you in class and then grab a bite afterward. 

 

Read to support your practice. 

For me, the more I learn about yoga, the more that it helps me stay dedicated and take my practice off the mat, too. Ask your teachers for some of their favorites books and podcasts and start there. Maybe even a motivational mantra!  A few of my go-to reads that have supported my yoga journey include Eastern Body, Western Mind by Anodea Judith; The Inner Tradition of Yoga by Michael Stone; and Healthy, Happy, Sexy by Katie Silcox.

 

Follow accounts that inspire you—and unfollow ones that make you feel like crap about yourself. 

I remember in the days that I first started getting interested in yoga. I was following so many accounts on Instagram! But, in the beginning, I couldn’t tell the difference between what was healthy and what might be creating lasting damage. I also wasn’t super aware of the messaging that I was giving to my own body, one that doesn’t look like all those yogis of Instagram, I had to find accounts that made everyBODY feel good and where people were practicing yoga safely. 

 

Go as often that feels good for your body. 

Who is to say what is the right amount of time to be practicing yoga? Maybe at first, one day a week is all you can manage. Maybe you can hit the ground running and practice four times a week, or maybe #yogaeverydamnday feels good in your body. The important thing is to listen to what your body is saying to you. If you need rest, you opt for a restorative class instead of a power vinyasa. Maybe you realize you need to put more emphasis on core building, so you start implementing a “sculpt” like class into your routine. Whatever you do, listen, and adjust accordingly. 

 

And lastly, remember that we are all beginners. 

Even those yogis on Instagram that can do all the backbends and handstands. Yoga is a vast practice that goes way beyond the physical postures. Any yogi worth their salt can tell you something that they are working on in their own practice. Go easy on yourself, and enjoy where you are at!

 

I hope this helps you to deepen and honor your practice. Namaste OMies!

 

Karstee Davis
Written by
Karstee Davis
Writer + Yogi
About the author
Karstee Davis is a writer + yogi living in the Boulder, CO area. She has written for Folk Rebellion, The Endometriosis Foundation of America, and CO Yoga + Life Magazine. You can find her at www.purifiedoutlook.com or on Instagram @purifiedoutlook.
healthy-apple-recipes
Wellness
Published Monday Nov 11, 2019 by Sara Lesher

4 Healthy Apple Recipes to Indulge Your Fall Cravings

Food
Recipes
Expert Advice

 

Autumn is the season of apple picking, pumpkin carving, and delicious holiday treats. Whether you’re searching for a delightful morning pick-me-up or your go-to seasonal salad, we’ve found four apple-featuring recipes that are yummy, healthy, and perfect for fall!

Breakfast

 

Cinnamon Apple Breakfast Quinoa

If you think quinoa for breakfast sounds a little strange, trust us, it’s a game-changer. This protein-packed, healthy treat is a great way to start your morning off strong. Not to mention, it’s gluten-free.

 

Photo credit: Simplyquinoa.com
 

1
Breakfast

 

Cinnamon Apple Breakfast Quinoa

If you think quinoa for breakfast sounds a little strange, trust us, it’s a game-changer. This protein-packed, healthy treat is a great way to start your morning off strong. Not to mention, it’s gluten-free.

 

Photo credit: Simplyquinoa.com
 

Lunch

 

Autumn Apple Salad with a Maple Vinaigrette

This salad is packed with so many different flavors, and they work in tasty harmony. It might be called the Autumn Apple Salad, but we want to eat it all year long.

 

Photo credit: Houseofyumm.com

2
Lunch

 

Autumn Apple Salad with a Maple Vinaigrette

This salad is packed with so many different flavors, and they work in tasty harmony. It might be called the Autumn Apple Salad, but we want to eat it all year long.

 

Photo credit: Houseofyumm.com

Dinner

 

Harvest Chicken Skillet with Sweet Potatoes, Brussels Sprouts, and Sautéed Apples

Sweet and savory, paleo and Whole30 approved, cooked in just one pan… ‘nuff said.

 

Photo credit: Wellplated.com
 

3
Dinner

 

Harvest Chicken Skillet with Sweet Potatoes, Brussels Sprouts, and Sautéed Apples

Sweet and savory, paleo and Whole30 approved, cooked in just one pan… ‘nuff said.

 

Photo credit: Wellplated.com
 

Dessert

 

Healthy Vegan Apple Crisp

This dessert is gluten-free, vegan, and delicious. It’s made with salted caramel cashew butter and maple syrup. YUM.

 

Photo credit: Veggiesdontbite.com
 

4
Dessert

 

Healthy Vegan Apple Crisp

This dessert is gluten-free, vegan, and delicious. It’s made with salted caramel cashew butter and maple syrup. YUM.

 

Photo credit: Veggiesdontbite.com
 

Sara Lesher About the Author Headshot
Written by
Sara Lesher
Marketing Content Associate
About the author
Spoiled by the San Diego sunshine, Sara’s hobbies include beaching, hiking, concert-going, and brewery-hopping. As MINDBODY’s Marketing Content Associate, she naturally loves reading and writing… so if you have any book recommendations, let her know. And just between us: she’s committed to health and wellness but loves a good taco (shoutout TJ Tacos in Escondido).