Five Places to Look for Yoga on Youtube

These ‘Five things’ lists I can see are going to become a thing for me. As a follow up to last weeks post on Why Not to Dismiss Yoga (Link here) I thought I would give some tips on the best Yoga youtubers to check out.

I am more or less entirely self taught on yoga from following these videos, and they’re a really good place to start if you’re feeling nervous about going to a physical class. They also only cost as much as your wifi, which is pretty good.

Here we go:

5. BadYogi
Not a huge catalogue of videos on here just yet, but Erin Motz can be found on other areas of youtube. A good yoga youtuber for beginners, with lots of short explanatory videos and quick flows that you can do alone or with others for a longer session. The great thing about Bad Yogi is the attitude of the channel, Erin understands frustration, failure etc, and really embraces it – almost poking fun at the people who take yoga (and maybe even life) too seriously. Definitely one to check out.

Yoga with Adriene
This is great channel for beginners. Adriene is chatty, accessible and funny. She is very gentle coaxing you into the poses, bringing a lightheartedness to the flows. She has lots of videos to chose from, some of my favorites are the ones for headaches and nausea, which can be quite difficult to find. She is undoubtedly a firm favourite in the Yoga youtube community. She is also doing a 30 Day Yoga Camp to break you into the New year.

3. Kathleen Holm
This is channel that hasn’t been used for while, but if you want some good, comprehensive short flows – this is the place to go. Often when I am rushed for time, but still want a little flow this is the place to go. Kathleen Holm has some fantastic 20 minute well-rounded yoga flows which are the perfect length if you are short on time – I often find that the 10 minute flows on other channels are just too short. With Kathleen Holm you only have one video to watch. All have a very rapid start, so be prepared, and wack your volume up high as the videos all seem to be really quiet – but this is a really good, underrated channel.

2. Ekhart Yoga
Esther Ekhart was the first yoga youtuber I found, and was my favourite for many years. Unfortunately she has stopped doing her longer classes on youtube, but she does now have a subscription site if you want more of her work. She has a lovely, calming voice, a patient manner of explaining and several good short flows, with some other shorter videos explaining specific poses. A great thing about her channel is the abundance of yoga professionals appearing on it, so there is always someone new. The short meditation classes with Esther Teule are really lovely and there are loads to chose from.

1. Fightmaster Yoga
Relatively new to youtube but has a massive catalogue of videos thanks to the 90 days of yoga she did early last year. Lesley is really lovely, working on donations to help expand the channel and maintaining her philosophy that free yoga will create a better world. I wholeheartedly agree. Her channel is perhaps geared to more intermediate yogis, but is definitely accessible for beginners and is a great channel to challenge yourself with. I love her flows with arm balances – my favourites (still working on the inversions though)! Like Esther she has a calm and soothing voice, and a real openness about her yoga journey which is lovely. Definitely check her out – this year she is doing a month of yoga classes for beginners which I put a link to last week.

This is by all means not all of the yoga youtubers (yogatubers?) out there, these are only some that I use regularly, If you have any other suggestions, please leave a comment.

Jess

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Five Reasons Not to Dismiss Yoga this New Year

Happy New Year!

For those wishing to start off the New Year with a the resolution to do a bit more exercise (with ya, mate), my personal favorite is Yoga. There is some derision about yoga as an exercise still, but it doesn’t take long after you start practicing it to realize why this form of exercise maintains after thousands of years.

My yoga journey began a few years ago, for me it opened up a path to peace that I didn’t even know existed at the time. It began, quite simply, as being something I could actually do, during a time when I felt like I couldn’t do anything.  I am, and always have been flexible, which gave me an initial advantage that allowed me to feel like I could keep going at it. It took off for me last year though, with Lesley Fightmaster’s 90 Days of Yoga challenge; I didn’t complete the 90 days but it helped me recognize something: I was struggling with low mood at the time, and I still do from time to time, bu what I discovered is that yoga was making me feel better by making me live in the moment, and thus, I started doing it more often. My yoga journey is still going, but looking back I am surprised by how far I’ve come without realizing it, which I why I want to convince other people to take it up too.  My resolution this new year is to go to actual yoga classes (with people! eek!) in the hope that one day I can become a qualified yoga instructor.

But in the meantime, here are five reasons you should consider yoga and join me on this journey…

Five Reasons to Consider Yoga/Five Myths Dispelled

5. You can lose weight with yoga.
No, it may not be as quick as some other high intensity exercises, that’s a given. But it is important not to listen to those people who say Yoga is only stretches, because it can be, but it can also be tough, sweat inducing cardio, depending on how you approach it.

If you are looking at Yoga from a weight loss perspective, however, you are going to need to do one of two things: Firstly, do higher intensity yoga – Power Yoga, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, anything with ‘flow’ in the title is a good place to start. You don’t have to do this all this time, in fact it can be good to mix it with some gentler stretching classes so your muscles don’t get too tense, but the more often you do these types of flows the more likely you are to lose weight.

Secondly, you could combine it with something else, you don;t eat one type of food, you don;t need to do do one type of exercise. Interchange it with walking, running, a weekly session at the gym, something that adds a little more cardio. This can be particularly good if you find the faster flows more difficult (I know I do).. My advice is to start small so you and your body get used to it and you begin to actually want to do it over time.

4. You don’t need to be flexible.
One of the nicest things about yoga is that you can adapt it to suit you. It happened that I was relatively flexible when I began, but don’t let it put you off – I bet there’s loads of things you can do that I can’t. The other thing I can tell you is, after practicing on and off, I am so much more flexible than I have ever been. Start small, build up. If you can’t touch your toes, touch your knees and you will get there eventually.

3. You don’t even really need a yoga mat….
This may be disagreed with my yoga professionals, but honestly, if you’re doing yoga at home, do yoga on the carpet and it’ll work much the same. Yoga mats are nice, however, if you decide you’re enjoying it enough to keep up with it. (As it happens, I did buy one, and It’s disappeared into come foreign corner of my room and I have’t seen it for three years. Such is life.) On another note, yoga, depending on how intense the flow you do, can be done in tracky bottoms. Nice.

2. You can do it at home.
Some people may argue that you should go to a proper yoga class with an instructor in the room with you.However, I know that being overweight, or new to something can be really daunting, and sometimes you just simply can’t afford it. This is the beauty of Youtube. If you mess up, no one is going to see except you; you can, in the privacy of your own home, experiment with different practices and flows, and find out what is right for you and your body. You don’t even need anything (see previous point!).

1. The Mental Benefits.
There seem to be a million and one studies which will tell you that yoga is proved to help depressiion, make you live longer, make you taller etc etc. The long and the short of it is, when you are focusing on getting a pose right, you are just thinking about the pose, and often this means your mind isn’t thinking bout all the things you have to do, or the things you’ve done wrong in your life. This kind of mindfulness is something we strive to bring into our everyday lives, for me, I don’t manage it all this time, but I can do it on the yoga mat, and that is why yoga is so important to me.

So there you go, five reasons why Yoga is awesome. So give it a go, if you’re trying to lose weight this New Year (you can do it!) or if you’re trying to start a new hobby – give it a go. I’ll be posting a few good youtube channels to start with soon, but in the meantime Lesley Fightmaster, one of my favourite ‘yoga-tubers’ is starting a 30 days of Yoga for beginners this month, so check it out:

Let me know if you start yoga, or what your New Years Resolutions are.
Best,
Jess