How to do yoga at home

Spending a bit more time at home right now? Me too. I’ve seen a lot of lists with ideas for things to do if you are self isolating or socially distancing at home and yoga is in almost all of them.

I’m not going to even attempt to give advice about how to manage the situation right now, but yoga, moving, breathing deeply, meditating, tuning in and chilling out are things that might help, and might help keep you occupied too. So if you want to do some yoga at home where do you start?

More and more yoga teachers are offering yoga online at the moment. That way you can still practice without needing to go out to a group class. Great for times like these when we’re all trying to socially distance, and great for the rest of the time when maybe other stuff gets in the way too.

What you need

Nothing! You don’t even need a mat, your carpet will be fine, if you have super hard floors maybe do any seated or all fours poses on a blanket and ditch it for standing postures.

Wear whatever you want – bonus of yoga at home, PJs are 100% okay – maybe not jeans though so you’re comfy, stretchy pants of any kind are perfect.

You might want to try and get some space from the rest of your family (if you can!). But I realise right now this may not always be possible – I have done lots of yoga at home with a child climbing on me, and it can be done, but otherwise maybe think about making it an evening thing.

Support your local teachers

This is a difficult time for lots of people, especially if you are self employed or run a small business like most yoga teachers and studios. If you normally practice with a teacher or at a local studio my first piece of advice would be to ask them about their online offerings. Lots are experimenting with how to move classes online and if they know you want it they will be more encouraged to create this. If you can afford to continue to support your local studio or teacher via their online classes PLEASE do! The energy that teachers are putting into online classes is huge – and when you pay for something you are much more likely to actually do it.

These kind of streamed classes are generally longer than the usual videos you can find online, and because teachers are working with smaller groups, and will know (or ask for) your history, they will be able to tailor classes for you and offer individual instruction.

Another bonus about this kind of teaching is that you can try yoga with teachers whose classes you normally can’t get too, or try out new styles.

Some local Oxfordshire teachers offering online classes include:

There has been a lot of chat in the yoga world about how online teaching will change the way we teach in the future, and this is an opportunity for us to try new ways to teach and learn. Teachers let me know about how you’re running your online classes and I’ll try and share it.

YouTube

YouTube is a huge resource for yoga online but it can be hard to find the right stuff for you.

Some of the teachers I like:

Online subscription services

These generally offer longer, more in depth videos, with lots of content you can choose from to suit you. You’ll need to pay a subscription fee, but many have free trials to start with, and I know some are offering free content right now.

I like Ekhart Yoga, and have also heard good things about Movement for Modern Life.

Just move

Of course the other option is to go freestyle and just move! If you are working at home chances are you might be wearing your stretchy pants anyway so you can probably find ways to squeeze in a couple of gentle stretches or ways to move.

There is no substitute for face to face yoga, but I’m a firm believer that all movement is good movement. Just use a bit of common sense and don’t go too wild (now is not a great time for a yoga injury).

One of the greatest lessons yoga has taught me is that the only constant is change. These are fast changing times, and in the yoga world we are definitely seeing a big move towards new ways to practice. This will serve us right now, but I think also in the future too.

Stay safe, look after yourself and do the yoga if you can.