The first day of spring is less than a month away… How are you doing on those New Year’s Resolutions? Get out that list –there it is, #9, Start Doing Yoga. If it’s still there, not checked off the list, why not let spring be the time to grow your yoga practice! Annie Damsky, Owner of Villager Yoga, shares her top tips for getting to yoga for the first time.
Call the studio to find out about the style of specific classes. This will give you an idea of which class will be a good fit for your personal needs. Yoga comes in many different styles. Some are more gentle and therapeutic, some are more powerful and sweaty and many options in between. Studios tend to offer introductory series for beginners; ours is a 6-week series on Wednesday evenings, 6:00 – 7:30 pm.
Get a yoga buddy. Call up that friend who has been telling you to get into yoga and ask her to come with you to your first class. Just make sure to refer to tip #1 so you don’t wind up in a class that’s not a fit for a first timer!
Don’t over think it. Most studios have mats to borrow. Bring a water bottle, dress comfortably and be prepared to go barefoot. Don’t wear your shoes into the actual yoga room and turn off your cell phone. Our goal at Villager Yoga, is to make yoga and the studio itself approachable, accessible and relatable to everyone, so don’t be surprised if the teacher or another student simply introduce himself or herself to you!
Go back for second class! Your first class is always a little discombobulating. You are doing something that you have never done before, after all. No matter how chaotic or challenging it felt to move into the poses or to rest in stillness (svasana) at the end of class, if you felt a strand of peace, calm, strength, joy, release, healing… anything rewarding, go back for a second class. You will feel those sensations deepen!
One of my favorite sentiments to hear from students after his or her first class is, “I didn’t know that I could feel that relaxed.” Challenge yourself try something new and you may be surprised with what else will open up to you!
Birmingham native Annie Damsky is the owner and operator of Villager Yoga. Prior to opening Villager Yoga, Annie spent 10 years as a marketing professional with experience in retail, real estate, branded and promotional marketing. Annie’s path to entrepreneurship began at Indian Springs School and continued with her education at The University of Texas at Austin, and includes experiences in marketing and advertising for Saks Incorporated, Parisian and Bayer Properties.
After laughing her way through her first yoga class in 2001, Annie began practicing yoga regularly a few years later and achieved her 200-hour yoga instructor certification in 2009. Identifying a void in the market for kids and family yoga, she opened Villager Yoga in 2012, combining her passions for yoga, idea creation and marketing. Annie enjoys advocating for Birmingham through various organizations and encouraging people to get out and explore our city!
ABOUT VILLAGER YOGA
Villager Yoga on Overton Road is a studio for the whole family that specializes in classes for all ages and stages of life. They have classes for growing families, like prenatal, yoga for new moms and kids & family yoga, in addition to offering “everybody” classes in varying paces, from gentle to active. Most of the classes are vinyasa (flow) based, however they also offer an alignment based class and a yin based class.
Their boutique features yoga mats, gifts and of course, yoga clothes. They also offer yoga parties for special occasions like birthdays, baby showers and bridal showers and teach private lessons in the studio and on- site at your home or office.
Thanks for sharing these tips with us, Annie! If you’re interested in taking yoga, check out the schedule of Annie’s upcoming classes below!
Family Yoga • February 28, 2015 • 9:00 am – 9:45 am
Prenatal • February 28, 2015 • 10:00 am- 11:15 am
Yoga for New Moms • February 28, 2015 • 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm
Sunrise Vinyasa • March 1, 2015 • 9:30 am – 11:00 am
Prenatal • March 3, 2015 • 5:30 pm – 6:45 pm