What to Bring to Your First Yoga Class

Yoga is a great way to relax and stay in shape, but if you're new to the practice, it can be intimidating. Knowing what to wear and what to bring to class can help make your first yoga experience more enjoyable. In every yoga class, you'll want to bring your mat, a bottle of water and a towel. If you're going to practice regularly, it might be a good idea to get a couple of accessories, such as a block and a strap.

Most of the time, yoga is done barefoot. If you feel uncomfortable taking your shoes off in front of strangers, consider wearing yoga socks. These special socks have non-slip grips on the bottom that hold the mat and prevent the feet from slipping. If you sweat a lot or are practicing hot yoga, bring a hand towel to class.

Let the instructor know before the class starts if you're completely new to yoga. This will allow them to monitor you throughout the class and provide additional instructions for the poses as needed. Don't be afraid if the teacher corrects your positions; practical instruction can be incredibly useful for learning good form. Try not to judge yourself harshly compared to what others are doing on their mats.

Yoga is a personal practice, and everyone's abilities and goals are different. Stay cheerful and keep your sense of humor; it's OK to laugh if you fall out of a position or say no to an adjustment if the teacher's practical approach isn't what you want. When attending a busy class, do your best to avoid stepping on other students' mats as you move through the room. Place your mat fairly close to the person next to you so that there is enough space for everyone.

If you like to wear sweatshirts, practice hot yoga or after an intense workout, consider placing a towel that covers your whole body on the mat.If you can't touch the floor in all the poses you should do, having a yoga block can make your practice safer and more fun. Blankets are also great as yoga accessories and can serve as knee pads or reinforcements for modified yoga poses.If a yoga class really isn't right for you, talk to your yoga teacher or studio employees to find out what other classes might be most beneficial. When buying a yoga mat, start with one at the cheaper end of the wide range of options available today; consider materials that are considered toxic (PVC) or more environmentally friendly.Any towel can serve as a yoga towel, although there are also some very well-designed yoga towels.