I'm Sorry I Laughed In Your Yoga Class

I'm The Girl Who Accidentally Laughed In Your Yoga Class, And I Am Deeply Sorry

Don't pretend like you keep a straight face while doing "happy baby."

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At the start of freshman year, a few friends and I decided to try one of the yoga classes on campus (free for all students!) It soon became a weekly event of relaxation and cheesy mirror selfies, giving us forty-five minutes every Thursday night to crack every joint in our bodies and try to hold our balance as well as the star athlete in the row in front of us.

Rosemary Binny

This was all until the new semester started, and new students with big new year's resolutions began to fill the class. I may not be a yoga pro (I can't even close my eyes in tree pose,) but I do know yoga etiquette. More importantly, I know what is not.

At the first spring class I attended, there was a packed house, and everyone (I do mean everyone) was there. That's fine. It is an amateur event after all. What is not fine is taking an obnoxiously loud deep breath at the beginning of our "quiet time" that makes me laugh sporadically for the rest of the hour-long class.

The Grinch Tries Yoga www.youtube.com

And that was far from the only thing to send me into a silent giggle fit in the sacred "de-stressing zone."

Around five minutes into the class, as I was finally starting to forget about the Darth Vader breath from before, we are all stretching out our shoulders by lying on the floor with our backs twisted. I close my eyes and go to my happy place. Well, I go there for three seconds before I feel someone reach over to hold my hand. I opened my eyes and my friend was staring straight back at me.

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Long story short: don't bring your friends to yoga.

But my friends were not the only problem in the class. All you couples out there, don't work out together. And girlfriends, when your man is getting settled into tree pose, do not push him over. The last thing I need to see in the mirror is your aggressive self bullying your boyfriend during the little bit of peace he can find in a class you forced him to come to in the first place.

And if you are a yoga pro, there is no need to show it off. I don't care if you can make your body look like a pretzel. I am personally satisfied with the frog pose I can hold when we are supposed to be in downward dog. You don't intimidate me, sister!

I know there are probably some of you reading this with no idea what a yoga class is truly like. Let me fill you in on some of the basics.

Throughout the entire class, the instructor is likely to have a Spotify playlist of relaxing tunes. The songs are always a hit, at least enough to lead my friend to have her Shazam app open for the entirety of the class. They really are quite nice. That is if the instructor has listened to the entirety of each song. From the bottom of my heart, I hope none of you ever have to endure the shock that is the trumpet entrance in the deceitfully relaxing "A Kiss to Build a Dream On."

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In all, I would still highly recommend yoga. Each class is begun with the instructor's guidance to "listen to what your body wants" (so no planks for me) and ends with a little nap, called "savasana," which my friends and I have resorted to calling "shavocado" (yes, like the vine.) The playlist makes you feel like you are writing poetry in a hole-in-the-wall coffee shop, and the people make you feel like you are training for the Olympics.

So, yoga, I'm sorry I laughed at you. You truly are a blessing. Let's just blame this one on the snort-breather and call it a day.

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10 Thoughts You Have During Yoga Class

You are stretching, lifting, and twisting like a pretzel.
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I am not new to yoga, but I have recently started taking yoga classes. I must say the experience is incredibly strange. Yoga class is this strangely intimate place. Where you are told to twist your body to all these uncomfortable positions while watching yourself in a God awful large mirror that covers the entire room.

1. The moment you walk into class and look for a spot.

2. The "resident" Yogi is "warming up"

3. The instructor tells you to go to the front of the mat and breathe.

4. You start the first set of upward and downward dog.

5. The instructor tells you to put your head down and breathe.

6. You are the only one falling out of your poses.

7. The moment you complete your first pose of the class.

8. "Class, we are almost done" the instructor says.

9. You get to lay on your back and stretch your arm.

10. You walk out of class and feel like you're on top of the world.

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3 Videos To Start Your Yoga Journey Off On The Right Foot

Yoga: not only a physical exercise, but a mental release that will leave you happier, healthier, and more in touch with your body.

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It's important for us to incorporate a variety of physical activities and exercises into our normal routines in order to keep our bodies strong, happy, and healthy. Many people, however, think of "exercise," solely as intense cardio or heavy weight lifting session. While those are both great forms of exercise, nobody should be so hyper-focused on the intensity of a workout as a sole criterion that they overlook the validity a slower yet equally beneficial option like yoga incorporated into our routine once in a while.

It is just as important to push our bodies as it is to give them time to rest and heal. Yoga is a way to connect your mind to your body and to explore your body's limits. It is a way to slow things down, allowing for a release of tensions from your body and mind. Studies have shown that people who practice yoga on a regular basis experience less stress, feel happier, and are more in tune with their emotions. Additionally, yoga is an easy way to increase muscle tone, strength, and flexibility. Haven't convinced you yet? Yoga can also increase energy levels, help to balance metabolism and improve circulatory and cardiovascular health.

Since I have started practicing yoga, I have seen changes in every aspect of my life. A few years ago I learned to start listening to my body when it told me it needed a break. I like to start every morning with a workout. If I wake up feeling sore and fatigued, instead of painfully pushing through an intense workout like I used to, I simply pull up one of the following videos and allow myself to heal and recharge for the day while still feeling satisfied having done something physical to start my day.

Since implementing that, not only have I noticed a change in the way my body feels, with higher energy levels and more endurance in my workouts the following days, but I also notice myself feeling more at peace throughout my days. I think straighter, and become far less irritable. My anxiety levels go down and I have more patience. I have been practicing yoga for nearly six years now, which has given me plenty of time to find some wonderful videos to use. Here are my top five, suitable for any level yogi to use with modifications to make your session more or less difficult depending on what your body needs.

1.25 Minute Fat Burning Yoga Meltdown Beginner & Intermediate

This is a video that I have used so many times that I think I have memorized every word by now. This video is part three of a three-part yoga for weight loss series. If you are a beginner, use this video but also check out the first two videos which may be helpful for you in learning some basic terminology and poses!!! I prefer the third video greatly over the other two but please feel free to try the others as well.

First of all, it's short (25 minutes) so you can squeeze it in at any time of the day, whether it is a quick morning session or a mental break between class. It is very mild and by far the least difficult of the three videos I will share, however you will still feel a nice burn in your legs and a good full body stretch. I also absolutely love the instructor, she is happy and fun to listen to, even after a hundred times listening! Trust me you will use this video all the time.

2. Full Body Flow - Intermediate Vinyasa Flow Yoga Workout

This video says it is an intermediate level, and you will notice that it is slightly more challenging than the first video I shared if you end up trying them both. That being said, it includes options for modification which allow any level of practices to successfully complete. In this video, you will be doing a series of Vinyasa Flows which is a great way to bring your body into a rhythm. It is also a great way to keep your muscles feeling balanced and to bring a sense of symmetry into your workout. You can expect everything you do on one side to be repeated exactly the same on the second side.

This video will test your strength and flexibility, and allow you to reach full relaxation and focus in a short 35 minute time spans.

3. Fluid Flow Intermediate/Challenging Yoga Class

Leigh Butler is an incredibly talented yoga instructor. Of all the videos I have shared with you in this post, this video will be the most challenging. I still encourage you to try it as there are modifications throughout the video which allow you to take it easier or more difficult variations on the poses.

This is also a longer video, it is a full hour long practice. When going into this workout you should expect to challenge your body. It will be a challenge of strength and flexibility that will leave you feeling energized and free of any tightness throughout the rest of your day. If at any point in the video something is too hard, just take a break and what feels good for your body until you are able to jump back in. Good luck!

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