10 Must-Know Yoga Tips for Beginners: From a Yoga Teacher

You don't have to study Sanskrit before your first class!


Getting started with the practices of yoga when you’re a beginner can be easier than you may think.

There are a wide variety of techniques and different styles of yoga, meditation, and breathwork that can support your physical, mental, and even spiritual health.

Here, we don’t want to overwhelm you; we want to provide you with a few easy yoga tips for beginners that you can implement as you start to explore the different practices.

Whether you choose to try Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa, or Ashtanga, and whether you choose to practice yoga at a studio or from the comfort of your home, here you’ll find some resources to get you started.

A yoga class with people doing a pose with yoga blocks.

Yoga Basics For Beginners

I remember when I went to my first class and a few of the names of the postures were called out in Sanskrit1 Wikipedia Contributors (2019). Sanskrit. [online] Wikipedia. Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanskrit., I felt out of place and confused, which fueled my interest to learn more about the yoga practice.

Here are a few basics:

  1. Yoga has its roots in Indian philosophy, designed to unite the individual consciousness with universal consciousness through physical postures, breathing exercises (pranayama), and meditation. Understanding the broader context of yoga can enhance your practice and give it deeper meaning.
  2. Listen to your body and not push yourself into pain or unnecessary discomfort.
  3. Use props like yoga blocks, straps, or cushions to support your body and make poses more accessible as you build strength and flexibility.
  4. Try to practice regularly, even if it’s just a few minutes a day at home. Regular yoga practice will help you become more familiar with the poses, improve your flexibility and strength, and deepen your understanding of yoga principles.
  5. It’s normal to feel awkward or frustrated at times. Be patient and compassionate with yourself and celebrate your learning process.
  6. Having a basic understanding of a few common poses can make you feel more comfortable and less out of place when you get started.

Check out the next section of the article to learn about a few of these postures!

Easy Yoga Tips For Beginners: In-Studio

If you choose to practice yoga in an in-person setting or yoga studio, here are some easy yoga tips to help you get started:

  • Wear comfortable clothing that allows for movement and bring your own yoga mat for more personal comfort and hygiene.
  • Look for classes labeled for beginners, or accessible, to ensure the pace and intention of the class suits your needs and experience level.
  • Arrive at least 10 minutes early if you can. Give yourself time to settle in, get acclimated to the space, and ask any questions to the yoga teacher.
  • It may be tempting to look around the class… Avoid comparing yourself to others; yoga is a personal experience focused on your own growth.
  • Adapt the practice to what you need. Modify poses and choose variations that work for you, no matter what your neighbor is doing.
  • Use your breath as a guide for how deep to go into poses.
  • Remember, yoga is about exploration and growth, not perfection. Enjoy learning about your body and mind through the practice.
  • Not all classes are for everyone: if you don’t like it, try a different yoga instructor, type of yoga, or even yoga studio.
A silhouette of a woman meditating.

Easy Yoga Tips For Beginners: Practicing Online

Here are some easy yoga tips if you choose to practice from home, with an online teacher:

  • Choose a quiet, comfortable spot in your home where you have room to move and can practice without interruptions.
  • Look for reputable online yoga classes, apps, and studios like Yoga International or EkhartYoga designed with a wide range of practitioners in mind, and with a wide variety of teachers, classes, and programs.
  • Schedule your yoga sessions just as you would for an in-studio class to build a routine into your daily life.
  • If you don’t have yoga props, use household items like books for blocks or a belt for a yoga strap.
  • Consider joining online yogic communities or forums for support, motivation, and inspiration from fellow yoga practitioners.
  • Pay attention to how each pose feels, and don’t push yourself too hard. It’s okay to skip poses that don’t feel right or stay in corpse pose instead of doing another sun salutation.

10 Accessible Yoga Poses For Beginners

Although yoga poses (asanas in Sanskrit) are only one of 8 limbs of the path of yoga, they are the most common practice in the Westernized world.

Every yoga class and sequence is different, but some postures tend to show up a lot across many yoga routines.

Here are 10 of the most common and accessible yoga poses that you can try as a beginner, with some easy yoga tips for beginners who want to try them:

1# Easy Pose (Sukhasana)

an annotated image of a woman wearing black yoga clothes doing easy Pose

Sukhasana is great for grounding and centering at the beginning of your practice.

Although called easy pose, this may not be a comfortable posture for folks with tighter hips or lower back issues.

Sit on a cushion or folded blanket to elevate your hips higher than your knees, making it easier to maintain a straight spine.

2# Child’s Pose (Balasana)

annotated image of a woman doing child's pose

This yoga pose relieves stress and tension in the back, shoulders, and chest.

Child’s pose encourages a sense of safety and protection, making it a comforting posture.

When talking about easy yoga tips for beginners, the main one here would be to use props!

Bring a folded blanket between your sitting bones and your heels, and rest your forehead on a block or a bolster to make the shape less intense.

3# Cat-Cow Stretch (Marjaryasana-Bitilasana)

an annotated image of a woman wearing black yoga clothes doing cat cow pose

The combination of these two postures while in table top, improves spinal flexibility and relieves tension in the torso and neck.

Here are two of my favorite easy yoga tips for beginners: if your knees are sensitive, place a blanket underneath them.

If your wrists hurt, instead of planting your hands on the floor in hasta bandha, consider placing your fists down.

4# Low-Lunge (Anjaneyasana)

an annotated image of a woman wearing black yoga clothes doing low lunge Pose

This pose stretches the hips, quadriceps, and glutes, and energetically, it enhances focus, balance, and concentration.

It can be practiced with a blanket under the back knee for comfort, and placing your hands on blocks to find more stability.

5# Plank pose (Phalakasana)

an annotated image of a woman in black yoga clothes doing plank pose

If you want to build strength in the core, shoulders, arms, and legs, try this asana.

Keep your shoulders directly over your wrists, engage your core, and maintain a straight line from your head to your heels.

If you find it too challenging or it doesn’t feel right, lower your knees to the ground for another variation.

6# Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)

an annotated image of a woman wearing black yoga clothes doing cobra pose

This posture is a gentle back bend that opens up the front body and encourages love and compassion.

Keep your elbows bent and close to your body, and lift your chest off the ground, keeping your shoulders relaxed and away from your ears and using the strength of your lower back, not just your hands.

7# Butterfly Pose (Baddha Konasana)

an annotated image of a woman wearing black yoga clothes doing bound angle Pose

This yoga posture improves your flexibility in the inner thighs, and groins.

Bound angle, or butterfly pose also stimulates your abdominal organs, potentially aiding in digestion and reproductive organ health.

If your hips feel tight, place blocks underneath your knees to keep them supported and avoid strain.

8# Seated Forward Bend (Paschimottanasana)

an annotated image of a woman wearing black yoga clothes doing seated forward bend Pose

One of the main yoga tips for beginners in this pose, as well as in standing forward bend: you don’t need to touch your toes!

Focus on lengthening your spine: bend your knees as much as you need to maintain the length in your back and find a balanced stretch on the back of your legs.

Use a blanket under your sitting bones to tilt your pelvis forward, and support your bent knees with a blanket or blocks beneath.

9# Happy Baby Pose (Ananda Balasana)

annotated image of a woman doing happy baby pose, ananda balasana

This posture can help relieve lower back pain and also help soothe your nervous system.

Hold onto your thighs, shins, or feet, and gently rock side to side to massage your spine.

Keep your neck relaxed and your shoulders grounded, and take deep breaths.

10# Legs-Up-The-Wall Pose (Viparita Karani)

an annotated image of a woman wearing black yoga clothes doing legs up the wall pose

You can practice this posture whether you have a wall nearby or not.

Practicing this yoga pose can promote a sense of grounding and tranquility. It also aids in circulation, bringing a refreshing energy flow to the body.

Bring yourself to lay on your back and stretch your legs up.

If you have a wall, let your legs rest on it, otherwise, you can let them float or you can place a block under your tailbone to explore a different variation.

A Yoga Class For Beginners

Try this class with a few poses and more easy yoga tips for beginners:

To Close up

When you’re a beginner, it is important to start with a solid foundation and keep an open mind.

Stepping onto the yoga mat for the first time can be both exhilarating and intimidating, and we hope you’ve enjoyed these easy yoga tips for beginners.

Read this piece next to find more videos created for those getting started:

Photo of author
Laia is an Afro-Catalan accessible and inclusive yoga & meditation teacher. She has trained in hatha, vinyasa, trauma-informed yoga, yin yoga, and restorative yoga and holds E-RYT 500 and YACEP accreditations with the Yoga Alliance. Additionally, she is a freelance writer and translator, publishing in Catalan, English, and Spanish. As a former professional athlete who lives with a chronic illness, Laia has gained valuable insights into the benefits of self-care and the importance of pausing and slowing down. She is dedicated to sharing accessible and sustainable practices of yoga and meditation to help people create a more harmonious life. Being a black and chronically ill individual, her mission is to empower non-normative yoga teachers to find their unique voices and develop tools to make wellness practices accessible to the communities they serve, thereby taking up space and creating a more inclusive and diverse yoga industry. Furthermore, as a writer and creative, she is passionate about supporting other creatives and innovators. She fosters a genuine community dedicated to finding balance while staying productive and inspired. Laia has developed unique techniques that intertwine yoga and meditation with writing, journaling, and other accessible methods to help each other stay creative and mindful.

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