Downward Facing Dog – old dog new tricks

Many people have a love/hate relationship with Downward Facing Dog. It's the nemesis of beginners and can challenge seasoned practitioners for years. People are often surprised when I tell them that I find Down Dog hard. In my opinion, it ranks up there with Warrior 1 and Upward Facing Dog as a technically challenging pose. It's [...]

No-no’s for newbies – a guide to yoga etiquette

There are just certain things you don't do like texting during a job interview, using the toilet at an open house, eating someone else's food from the office fridge and wearing shoes in yoga. At Cultivate Calm, we love introducing yoga to beginners. But just like life, yoga has its own etiquette. We want you [...]

You stole my spot: where to place your yoga mat

Recently I wrote a blog about yoga etiquette and it really struck a chord with some of you. So here's a tongue in cheek guide to where to place your yoga mat in the studio. 1. Hot or cold? Generally in the warmer months we run the air conditioner. There are two in the room, on [...]

A funny thing happened in yoga…

Yoga is just like life. Embarrassing things happen and we need to laugh them off. Here's a list of embarrassing things that happen in yoga and what to do if it happens to you. 1. Farting It happens all the time. Not a day goes by when someone doesn't fart in class. All that twisting [...]

5 essential yoga poses for beginners

To be honest, I don't know how many yoga poses there are. Probably thousands when you consider all the modifications and variations. But there are some basic yoga poses that everyone, including beginners need to know. I've chosen these as they are some of the most common and they also provide a foundation for a [...]

7 common yoga mistakes (and how to avoid them)

No one starts out being good at yoga, it takes practise. And part of that practise is learning from mistakes. So why not learn from the most common yoga mistakes that I've both made and see regularly in class: 1. Holding your breath The number one mistake people make in yoga is holding their breath. [...]

Top tips for yoga newbies

We all have to start somewhere. Everyone remembers their first awkward yoga class where you are just trying to figure out your left from your right, what the strange pose names are and where you're meant to put your feet. It generally takes about five yoga classes to get the hang of it and not [...]

My first (awkward) yoga class

I went to my first yoga class when I moved into a house with a yoga studio at the end of my street. I joined one of their introductory offers and my first class was a beginner class. I was excited to be doing something good for myself and also a little more than curious [...]

7 signs you’re getting better at yoga

We’ve all been there. No one has escaped that first awkward yoga class and after a few classes, we all wonder when we’re going to get better. The good news is that we don’t have to be standing on our heads to know that our yoga practice is improving. As a former beginner and now [...]

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