If you’ve ever doubted the power of online or at-home workouts, we’re here to put those doubts to rest. Yes, friends — an online yoga workout is, in fact, a very real workout. We can tell you with confidence that these workouts will work your body and help you reap the many amazing health benefits of exercise.
Online yoga classes have helped so many people get and stay in shape, especially during these COVID times. They’ve also helped so many feel better about, well, everything. What’s not to like about that?
If you’ve never tried an online yoga workout, you’re about to have a brand new experience — and we’re so excited for you! But let’s be real: any time you try something for the first time, there can be a bit of a learning curve… and online yoga classes are no exception. We want to make that learning curve a little easier on you so you feel more prepared than ever to jump into an at-home yoga practice.
First, let’s talk about what you have to gain from online yoga workouts. This will help you get motivated!
The benefits of online yoga workouts
The benefits of these workouts are twofold. First, you’ve got the standard health benefits that come with practicing yoga. But you’ve also got the extra benefits that come with taking the opportunity to exercise in the comfort of your own home.
Health benefits of yoga
- It can ease asthma symptoms. In a study of 57 adults with mild to moderate asthma, adding an eight-week yoga session to their conventional care dramatically improved asthma symptoms.
- It fights arthritis. A study indicated that iyengar yoga — known for its use of props like belts, blocks, and other positioning aids — might help people with rheumatoid arthritis.
- It can help you sleep better. Yoga has proven to be one of the most effective approaches to getting a good night’s sleep as compared to a wide range of other treatments.
- It can boost your emotional health. A study from Duke University Medical Center suggests that yoga can benefit those living with depression, schizophrenia, other psychiatric conditions, and more.
- It can help treat back pain. In a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, people living with chronic back pain reported better back function after a few months of practicing yoga.
- It can boost fertility. In recent years, couples have increasingly turned to yoga as a means of decreasing stress and increasing their chances of conceiving a child.
- It can relieve hangovers. Still feeling it from a fun night before? Several yoga poses — shoulder stand, plow, and fish — work the thyroid gland, thus boosting your metabolism and helping you kick a hangover faster.
- It fights heart disease. In a study of 19 patients with heart failure, adding eight weeks of yoga classes to the treatment of nine of the patients had meaningful benefits. They had greater capacity for exercise and experienced an overall improvement in hearth health and quality of life.
- It can ease the symptoms of PTSD. A study published in the Journal of Traumatic Stress found that yoga could be a beneficial adjunctive treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.
- It can improve your memory. Yoga’s benefits may even extend to your brain!
- It can support weight management efforts. Just because yoga is a low-impact exercise doesn’t mean it can’t help you lose weight or maintain your current weight, if that’s one of your wellness goals. Any exercise you do can burn calories, and more intense yoga flows can really get you sweating and inspire you to push yourself.
Extra benefits of working out at home
- It saves time. You don’t have to worry about transportation! So much time can go into prepping for and traveling to and from the gym or studio. Exercising on your own turf saves you all of that!
- It’s convenient. It’s impossible to overstate the importance of convenience. When you work out in your own living room or basement or office or bedroom, there’s no need to find a babysitter for your kids or to coordinate your day around a studio’s schedule.
- It saves you money! Ca-ching, ca-ching! The only investment necessary for at-home yoga workouts is a yoga mat. Sure, you’ll pay the low cost of online classes, but that’s big savings compared to annual gym or studio memberships.
- You may feel more confident. Since you’re already in your comfort zone with an at-home workout, you can feel more confident to try poses without worrying that others will be watching you. There won’t be any temptation to compare yourself to more experienced yogis!
Have you already tried working out at home?
If you’ve already tried at-home exercise and didn’t totally enjoy the experience, don’t let that stop you from giving it another go. Thanks to new advancements in tech, online yoga classes are only getting better and are easily accessible whenever and wherever you want them. If you have a laptop, smart TV, tablet, or even a phone, you’ll be able to find your way to tons of online yoga classes.
Plus, there are many different styles of yoga to choose from, including yoga classes for beginners and more intense flows. At Bulldog Online, we even offer custom workout plans that will walk you through weeks of classes to help you reach your wellness goals.
If you’re ready to give at-home yoga a try with online classes, we have a few ideas to help you make the very most of it.
Tips for starting your online yoga routine
#1) Know your limits
As you get more comfortable with yoga, you’ll gain a better understanding of your body and how it moves. Over time, you’ll also have the opportunity to build your strength and flexibility — but if you’re new to yoga, it’s a good idea to start slowly.
Don’t try to do a one-hour session every day from day one. If you do this, you might get overwhelmed and you may not stick with it. Instead, start with one or two workouts a week until you become more comfortable with your yoga practice. From there, you can start incorporating workouts more frequently. You may even work up to a daily practice!
Start with beginner classes and learn about your body’s limits. Then, the sky’s the limit!
#2) Listen to your body
The mind and body connection is super important in yoga. When you start taking online classes, you should really tune into your body’s signals for guidance on how to adapt poses.
Don’t be afraid to modify your practice for your individual abilities! The leaders in our online classes will offer modification ideas, but you should do what you’re comfortable with, too, especially while you’re taking beginner classes.
#3) You don’t have to be flexible right away!
One of the biggest benefits of yoga is the way it improves flexibility. The stretching and movements have been proven to improve your range of motion. Yoga is low-impact, so you’ll gain flexibility slowly without becoming too sore. Plus, since you can modify many poses based on your current abilities, you can improve your flexibility starting from wherever you are… right now.
Becoming more flexible may not be your end goal, but it’s still a great benefit to a regular yoga practice.
#4) Think about your breathing
Your breath is an important part of a yoga practice. Inhaling and exhaling with different movements aligns your breath with your yoga poses so you get the maximum benefits from your workout. As you get more comfortable and start practicing more often, you’ll start to learn the breath patterns and techniques that will best serve you.
To start, we encourage you to simply begin paying attention to your breath while you exercise! Tuning in like this will help you adapt your breathing as you go. You might also consider trying a meditation class. This will help you learn more about your breath patterns.
#5) Understand the power of music
Music is a fantastic way to get motivated in every exercise, and yoga is no different! Something you’ll notice right away in Bulldog Online classes is the soundtrack. We use playlists full of fun, dance-worthy tracks that will ensure you have the best time ever with your at-home yoga workout. Plus, good music has its share of health benefits.
According to the National Institute of Health,
When music possesses “high-groove” qualities, your brain gets excited and induces movement. Your playlist has the ability to make you move, no matter how much you’re dreading the workout.
#6) Fuel your body
You’ll get more out of your efforts on the mat when you eat well! Combining well-balanced eating with consistent physical activity will help you reach your wellness goals more quickly and effectively than one of those aspects alone.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when planning your meals:
- Look for foods packed with nutrients
- Energize with grains
- Power up with protein
- Mix it up with plant protein foods
- Vary your fruits and veggies
- Don’t forget dairy
- Drink plenty of water
- Eat until you’re full
#7) Find a good spot
Find an area in your home that has enough space for you and your mat. If possible, it’s also nice to have a spot that you can really call your own, with limited distractions.
Beyond that, there are really no rules as far as where you might choose to take your online yoga classes! All you need is the space and the motivation!
Want to give it a shot?
If you’ve been wanting to practice yoga, but have been nervous about going to classes, yoga workouts at home might be just the solution you need. One of the best parts about online classes is that they give you the opportunity to try yoga and see if you like it! It’s a no-judgement zone.
>> Taking an online yoga class might just be the first step to lifelong love! Pick your first class here!