A Guide: 10 Beginner Yoga Poses

by | Jul 6, 2023 | Uncategorized | 0 comments

“10 Essential Yoga Poses for Beginners”

Starting something new can be daunting, especially in fitness. We’ve heard a lot of people are often too scared to try out yoga because they have no idea what half the poses are or what to do or what they look like. That’s completely normal!

We’ve all gotta start somewhere, so here’s a guide to the Top 10 Beginner Poses you’ll most likely hear in your first class:

  1. Mountain Pose AKA Tadasana
  2. Child’s Pose AKA Balasana
  3. Downward Dog AKA Adho Mukha Svanasana
  4. Warrior 1 AKA Virabhadrasana I
  5. Warrior 2 AKA Virabhadrasana II
  6. Tree Pose AKA Vrikshasana
  7. Cat-Cow Pose AKA Marjaryasana-Bitilasana
  8. Bridge Pose AKA Setu Bandhasana
  9. Seated Forward Fold AKA Paschimottanasana
  10. Corpse Pose AKA Savasana

Now we’ll breakdown each pose for you and explain how to do it and how it benefits you:

  1. Mountain Pose
    • How to Do It:
      • Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart. Ground your feet into the mat, engage your core, and roll your shoulders back and down. Extend your arms by your side with your palms facing forward.
    • Why We Do It:
      • It helps to improve posture, balance, and body awareness. Some instructors will often go back to mountain pose to set up for the next pose in the flow.
  2. Child’s Pose
    • How to Do It:
      • Kneel on the mat and sit back your heels. Exhale and fold forward, resting your torso on your thighs and extend your arms forward or along your body. Relax, letting your forehead rest on the ground.
    • Why We Do It:
      • It gently stretches your back, hips, and shoulders allowing you to release tension and find relaxation. Instructors will often tell their students to go back to Child’s Pose to help you reset and relax your mind.
  3. Downward Dog:
    • How to Do It:
      • Start on your hands and knees, with your hands slightly forward of your shoulders. Press into your palms and lift your knees of the ground. Straightening your legs your body should form and upside down V shape. Relax your head and neck.
    • Why We Do It:
      • This stretches your entire body, strengthening your arms and legs while energizing your body.
  4. Warrior I:
    • How to Do It: 
      • From downward-facing dog, step your right foot forward so it’s between your hands. Point your left foot to the side and lift your torso up. Bend your front knee and extend your arms up towards the sky with your palms facing each other. 
    • Why We Do It:
      • It improves your strength, stability, and focus while you stretch out your hops and chest. 
  5. Warrior II:
    • How to Do It:
      • Start off in Warrior I and stretch your hips and lower your arms so that they are parallel with the ground. Keeping your front knee bent and look straight ahead to where your front hand is. 
    • Why We Do It:
      • This builds strength in the legs and arms, improves your balance, and enhances your concentration.
  6. Tree Pose:
    • How to Do It:
      • Start in Mountain Pose and shift your weight onto your left foot. Take your right foot and place the bottom of it against your left inner thigh or calf, avoid placing it on your knee joint. Find your balance and press the palms of your hands together bringing them together in front of your heart. 
    • Why We Do It:
      • It strengthens your legs, improves stability, and helps with focus and brings about an inner calm.
  7. Cat-Cow Pose:
    • How to Do It:
      • Settle on the mat with your hands and knees on the ground. Make sure your spine is neutral. Inhale and arch your back by lifting up your tailbone and look up to the ceiling. Exhale, and round your spine, tucking your chin into your chest and drawing in your belly button.  
      • Why We Do It:
        • Repetition of this flowing pose warms up the spine and increases your flexibility.
  8. Bridge Pose:
    • How to Do It: 
      • Lay down on your mat. Bend your knees and plant your feet into the mat hip width apart. Engaging your glutes lift your hips up toward the sky. Feel free to interlace your fingers underneath your body for support. 
    • Why We Do It:
      • It strengthens your back, glutes, and legs, while opening up the chest and shoulders.
  9. Seated Forward Fold:
    • How to Do It:
      • Sit on the mat with your legs stretched out in front of you. Inhale and lengthen your spine, as if someone is pulling your head up to the sky. Exhale and hinge forward from your hips. Reach for your feet or ankles, if your muscles are too tight listen to your body and don’t push yourself too far. Allow your head and neck to relax.
    • Why We Do It:
      • It stretches your hamstrings, spine, and shoulders helping with flexibility and calming your mind.
  10. Corpse Pose:
    • How to Do It:
      • Lay down on your back with your legs and arms relaxed alongside your body. Close your eyes and consciously release any tension in your body.
    • Why We Do It:
      • This pose is often one of the last poses, signaling the end of your yoga flow. It helps your body destress and brings your body to a relaxed state, ready for you to finish the rest of your day.

Now that you’ve familiarized yourself with some of the beginner poses, book yourself into that yoga class, or if you want practice these on your own! These poses are a great introduction to yoga and have great benefits on their own. BUT! Remember that everyone has to build their foundation first and that even with this guide you’ll never get better if you never practice. This guide will be helpful for your first class, but you’ll do more than just these poses in your practice ensuring a full body workout that helps stretch stiff muscles as well as strengthens them.