Salina Taqi, co-founder of Yoga X, shares some tips on how to start yoga while staying indoors.
There’s never been a better time to take a deep breath and do some stretching. If you’ve been in lockdown and are feeling inactive and want to stay fit as well as have that sense of calm, then maybe you should start thinking about doing some yoga at home. In fact, right now it’s more important than ever to be indulging in activities such as yoga.
Salina Taqi, Yoga X co-founder, shares important tips on how one can practice yoga during lockdown.
“The first and most important thing before you start yoga is to set your intention that you want to practice yoga and you want to do it for your physical, mental and emotional well being,” informs Salina.
“Once you have set your intention, the next step is to find a quiet, comfortable spot at home and set yourself up.”
According to the yogi, to set yourself up you will need a mat, a block (if you don’t have a block you can use books or a shoe box) and a blanket. “Just make a nice, comfortable space that is peaceful and quiet, a room in which not many people enter so that it is your little Zen space,” she says.
The next step is to choose the style of yoga that you want to practice. “Make sure you do some research about the different styles of yoga before starting; maybe you want to do a mohata based practice or you want to do a flow or you want to do a mix of everything. Set that as your intention and take it from there,” she explains.
Salina stresses that it is important to practice at one set time, so that you are consistent. “Fix a time in which you can meet yourself daily on your mat. Morning is a great time to practice i.e. as soon as you wake up and start doing it on an empty stomach. If morning doesn’t suit you then opt for a time that suits you well. Yoga is all about practice and the key is to be consistent. Once you have set your intention, you must keep that promise to yourself.”
“Remember to start your practice with a little bit of meditation and grounding the mind and always end your practice with shavasana; do not skip that out,” advises Salina. “Shavasana is also known as the dead man pose; it is a pose that you do to completely relax your body and mind.”
She further stressed on the fact that yoga is a lot more than just a physical practice. “It is all about calming the mind and with this ongoing pandemic, this is a great practice for you to do right now in order to calm the nerve and calm the mind; it really goes beyond the body.”
According to Salina, it is always good to start slow. “If you are a beginner, start with the basics. Get the fundamentals right, get the breathing correct and learn to breathe into each pose. I advise all beginners to start with just 5 or 6 poses and let your body open itself out.”
She continues, “There are several poses for beginners. Some basic ones include the mountain pose, downward facing dog – it is a great pose to stretch out the entire body and it is an inversion so you get fresh blood into the crown. Then there is the forward fold, chair pose, several seated postures like seated forward fold and bowed angle pose.”
Salina highly recommends yoga along with meditation for those who are suffering from anxiety and want to relieve stress. “Begin your practice with a nice long meditation then do pranayama (deep breathing). Breathing is key to releasing anxiety and stress.”
She adds, “More than anything, yoga helps regulate your nervous system and really makes you mindful of the present moment. What it does is make you realize that life is happening in the now; you are not your past, you are not your future, you are not your mistakes and you are not your traumas. That is the magic of yoga, it is all about present moment awareness.”
On a parting note, the yogi says that practicing yoga is all about the presence of mind and mindfulness. “All the asanas and physical postures help circulate blood in your entire body, which gives you that balanced feeling of well being,” she concludes.