Frequently asked questions
How often should I practice Yoga?
It would be ideal to practice Yoga every day although it sounds impossible particularly in the beginning. It’s important to enjoy doing Yoga, so it should not be enforced to be strict and harsh. Be gentle to yourself, pay attention to how you are feeling and adjust your practice accordingly.
Can I eat before doing Yoga?
The traditional way recommends that you should do Yoga when your stomach is empty. (Four hours after a full meal or two hours after a light meal). However, if your blood sugar plummets when practicing, and you can’t make it through the whole practice on an empty stomach, you may try to eat some light food like a piece of fruit or some yogurt , or drink some juice before your practice. Try to figure out what is best for you.
How to breathe properly when I am doing Yoga?
All breathing in Yoga (unless specified) is through the nose. Breathing, in most Yoga poses, allows maximum exercise of the diaphragm, the sheet of muscle between the abdomen and the chest. On inhalation, expand the upper abdomen and rib cage, lower the diaphragm, and focus on breathing into the front and the back of the rib cage. On exhalation, contract the abdominal muscles, raise the diaphragm and pull the navel toward the spine at the end of the exhalation to help squeeze out as much air as you can. Contraction of the abdominal muscles causes the diaphragm to press upward and compress the lungs to help lungs to empty completely. It’s important to bring your awareness to your breath as the air flows out and in. As you breathe out, feel how your lungs empty, and how the exhalation cleanses and releases tensions. As you breathe in, feel how the inhalation fills you, nourishes you, and restores fresh energy for you.
Why do I need to practice yoga with bare feet?
First, bare feet keep you from sliding all over your mat. Second, make your soles and toes to be more sensitive. Third, bare feet make you more grounded.
Why yoga can improve the quality of sleep?
A common cause of sleeping problems is the inability to relax or let go of muscular tension. Another reason is the inability to quiet the “chatter and noise” of the mind when going to bed. Yoga practice can help you to relax the restless mind as more as possible, thus improving the quality of sleep.
If I feel pain while doing a pose, what should I do?
If there is only a minor sensation of the pain, that is fine. If the pain is uncomfortable, come back from the pose and then ask yourself, “Which muscles can I relax and which muscles can I contract and how to breathe deeply to relieve the pain?” The pain in your body can be a good teacher that will show you how to improve the alignment of a pose. Whenever you have joint pain, you should come back from the pose immediately until you can figure out how to move without causing the pain. Ideally, you should feel comfortable and stable in every pose. It means there is a feeling of evenness of breathing, mind, and sensation running throughout your entire body and mind when you are doing Yoga.
If I get sick, do I need to stop or continue?
It depends on how sick you are and how you feel. Listen to your body. If you feel you can do it, just do it. Maybe you will feel better after practice. However, if your body tells you to take a rest, stop as long as you need to and resume when you are ready. Also, you can shorten the time you practice and just do some easy poses when you are sick.
If I am on my periods, do I need to stop practice or avoid some postures?
In many cultures, women treat their periods as a time for resting and nurturing themselves. If you feel it’s easy to get tired during menstruation, you can take one or more days off. However, if you feel well enough to want to continue your practice, you don’t need to stop; just avoid the inverted poses that might impede your natural flow. In general, your practice should be based on more receptivity than effort. Don’t force yourself; just listen to your body. Extreme twists, extreme forward bends, and extreme backbends are considered to be too intense during periods. Some poses are recommended for menstruation, such as Cobbler’s Forward Bend, Reclined Cobbler’s Pose, Reclined Hero Pose, Wide-Legged Seated Forward Bend and Relaxation Poses.
Do I need to stop when I am injured?
Although Yoga may not be the most effective way to deal with an injury, you can also find a range of Yoga poses that can help you heal from your injury. You don’t need to stop practice if the injury is not severe. Even though an injury prevents you from doing the full poses, you can modify and minimize the poses while still understanding the general direction of movements of the poses. It’s very important to learn how to modify the poses when you have an injury or some kind of physical difficulties. Working with your breathing and listening to your body are the most essential things when you are doing Yoga. However, if there are injuries that are so severe that you have to rest the injured area. It doesn’t mean you have to give up Yoga practice completely. In these difficult times, practice breathing, do restorative poses, and meditate. These can all be very beneficial.
Do I need to give up other exercises to do yoga?
Definitely you don’t need to give up your other exercises to practice Yoga. In fact, Yoga practice can complement other physical exercises, such as running, walking, swimming, cycling; work out, and tennis. Yoga practice gives you chances to stretch, open up, relax and bring awareness to the parts of your body that you might ignore. Yoga teaches us to bring awareness to our breathing, mind and our body when we are awake.
Why does doing yoga feels SO GOOD?
I think Yoga is the best gift you can give yourself. Regular practice tones your muscles, keeps your body and mind flexible, and builds up strength. It helps with weight control, keeps you younger, and it’s a good preventative healthcare. It’s a tool to release the stress and muscular tension. Peace of mind and higher awareness of your body and mind are developed in Yoga practice. Yoga strengthens and balances your body and mind, especially the nervous and the glandular system. It releases “feel good” chemicals from the brain. The flow of your internal energy is boosted through Yoga practice. It stimulates pressure points and meridians in the same way that acupressure does.