As the semester comes to an end that means my yoga learning project does as well. I loved this project and had such a great time working on my physical and mental health. I was able to notice the many benefits of yoga and how it positively impacted my life. Going beyond learning yoga, this project has taught me how to seek out online learning resources, given me the opportunity to try out various new content creation tools, provided me the confidence to post videos and pictures of myself, and taught me how to be present in each moment. This blog post is dedicated to highlighting what I learned, what I accomplished, and what resources I used.
Outline of my journey:
Week one: Yoga Newbie
The first week I outlined why I decided on yoga for my learning project. I also outlined my plan and my goals for this project.
Week two: Getting down with the dog… literally.
Week two I used YouTube as a resource and followed along with a Hatha style yoga sequence that was an isolated hip and lower back release with Adriene. This is where I learned my favourite yoga pose, the happy baby pose. I highly recommend Adriene’s yoga sequences, she is great! I also talked about a problem I ran into with my first attempt at yoga.
Week three: Flexibility is not my friend
This week I worked on yoga focussing on flexibility. Flexibility is a huge weakness of mine and improving my flexibility was one of my goals of this project. I used YouTube again but a classmate of mine recommended I try out a new instructor, Sarah Beth. This is where I learned my least favourite yoga pose: the half camel pose.
Week four: Levelled up!
Week four was a busy week! I tried out morning yoga thanks to my classmates who voted on my poll. I used the Yoga for Beginners app and was extremely disappointed by it. Then I learned the 12 Must-Know Yoga Poses for Beginners which helped me perform a really tough Vinyasa power flow. Finally, I stepped out of my comfort zone and created my first youtube video of myself performing the really hard power vinyasa flow that I tried out.
Week five: It’s getting hot in here
This week I tried out Bikram yoga at home, also known as hot yoga! I used Pinterest to learn about hot yoga and how to create a hot yoga space in my own home. Unfortunately the resource did not provide a sequence or flow to go along with it so I went back to YouTube to practice a hot yoga flow by Adi.
Week six: Rejuvenated & Refreshed
This week I tried out restorative yoga. The article I found provided me with background information on the restorative yoga practice as well as five basic restorative yoga poses and how to perform them with props. Feeling like performing 5 poses wasn’t enough, I went to YouTube to find a restorative flow to follow along with.
Week seven: Acro…Oh no!
Thanks to my classmates who voted on another poll, week seven my partner and I tried out acro yoga! I used the Yoga Journal website and found it to be the best website to date that I was able to learn from without having to search for a secondary resource like YouTube. The website and acro yoga article provided me with a video to use for reference or follow along with the written instructions, which I loved. I also included a quick video of my partner and I performing the hardest pose in the sequence.
Week eight: Fitness+ +
Week eight I tried out Apple Fitness+ as a resource and LOVED IT. I highly recommend anyone who is looking for a new place to discover ANY type of workout to give it a shot with the free month trial. The yoga section on Fitness+ had so many options to choose from along with three different instructors to learn from. I followed along with Jessica Syke and loved how she had two other people with her performing the yoga sequence at varying levels. I also provided another clip of myself performing what I thought was the hardest pose within Jessica’s sequence, the standing hand to toe pose.
Week nine: YogaTok
Week nine I tried to learn yoga through TikTok as my resource. I was quite disappointed with it as it only produces one minute videos. If I were to actually learn from TikTok I would have to compile a lot of videos which seems inefficient. However, I came across a yoga account named arina.yoga and felt like her content was the best learn from. I would not recommend TikTok to learn anything more than the yoga poses. However, I would recommend it if you are very beginner and not quite sure if yoga is for you.
Recommended Yoga Resources:
- YouTube: there are endless yoga videos out there.
- Yoga journal: This website offers poses, practices, meditation, how to teach yoga, foundational information on the differing yoga practices, terminology, philosophy, history, and so much more.
- Fitness+:So many workouts to choose from along with differing instructors to match your style and level of yoga.
My goals for this project were to improve my overall well-being, relieve my lower back and hip pain, and improve my balance and flexibility.
I can easily say that yoga has impacted my life in a positive way. I have learned how to become more present in the moment which ultimately helps relieve some anxiety that I struggle with. I have noticed I feel happier and less stressed on the days that I practice yoga. Not only has yoga improved my mental health, it has improved my physical health as I have felt lower back release. Unfortunately, I did not provide a baseline of my balance but I can tell it has improved as I am less wobbly throughout yoga practices and feel like I have a tighter core. I believe my flexibility has improved slightly and it is something I will continue to work on.
Here are some progress pictures of my flexibility training:
Even though it wasn’t as much progress as I originally hoped for, I am still proud of finally being able to touch my toes!!
Even though this learning project is coming to an end, I am making it a goal of mine to continue practicing yoga on a regular basis.
I hope to encourage others to give yoga a try as I have noticed it has positively impacted my overall health and well-being. Before this project, I always avoided yoga because I felt like I wasn’t flexible enough, didn’t know enough, or was too intimidated to go to a class. I highly recommend giving it a try because of the benefits associated to it. Check out the image below to see which type of yoga is right for you!