Guide to developing your practice

If you are new to our site, or new to yoga, I know it can be a little overwhelming and you may be wondering where to start! Here is a bit of a guide to help you begin to build your yoga practice, and some quick links to a few of the introductory videos.

  1. In general, I suggest practicing at least 2 days a week. More is better if you feel up to it. But start low, progress slowly, and really listen to your body, using how you feel as a guide. Remember you can stop and rest whenever you need to. You will know when you are ready to progress further.
  2. Choose a time that works for you and really try to make it a habit. This will make it easier to stick with it over time.
  3. Do not eat a heavy meal before practice (practice at least 1-2 hours after eating). If you like to practice first thing in the morning, something small and light like fruit or juice should be fine. I personally like to practice on an empty stomach, but make sure I am well hydrated.

Getting started:

Start with the tutorial on Modified Sun Salutations and/or the Brief Prop Demo (links below). This will teach you how to use blocks (or a chair at the front of your mat) to keep your spine safe. We use these props in nearly all of our practices.

Then, begin with the Y4C style practices in the Video Library These will say Y4C style, available to all levels. Try several of these, and just write down which ones you like, so you can remember and repeat them as often as you like. And just keep working your way through the list of videos, which all have slightly different combinations of the postures. I selected a few and put quick links here below. You will note that there are a couple on the full members only video library page that say “gentle practice” and a few that say “vigorous”. Try the gentle practices on a day when you aren’t feeling as energetic, but still want to get some movement in. And once you have gotten used to the Y4C style practices and you are fine putting some weight into your arms, review the tutorial on More Vigorous Sun Salutations before trying the “vigorous” practices.

Also peruse the list of educational videos, and watch these when you don’t want to do any movement, but have some time to learn about the background and philosophy of yoga, how yoga is particularly helpful to us breast cancer survivors, as well as some more detail about breast cancer treatment and how it affects our yoga practice. Again, these do not include any movement. I selected a few and put quick links below.

Finally, check out the tutorial videos These are shorter focused videos on particular topics, from specific yoga postures (some more advanced) to lymphedema to osteoporosis to core strengthening and more. You can practice along with these, so do these on a day when you are ready to learn something new or if certain topics are more relevant to your needs. I selected a few and put quick links below.

As you proceed through the videos and become more comfortable with the movements, you will slowly feel yourself stronger, more flexible, and more confident and in tune with your body. You will eventually be able to participate in any yoga class in your community or on-line. You can continue to practice with us, or start to branch out to other yoga offerings as you like!

If you have any questions about how to proceed, or any specific limitations you have, please feel free to shoot me an email!

Introductory videos and full asana practices (click links below)

See the Members Only Video Library for the complete list

Gratitude Y4C style Yoga asana Practice

Patience Y4C style Yoga asana Practice

Balancing effort and ease Y4C style Yoga asana practice

Heart opening Y4C style Yoga asana practice

Inner balance Y4C style Yoga asana practice

Success in Yoga Y4C style Yoga asana practice

Suggested Educational videos:

see the full Members only educational video page for the complete list

Breast cancer basics

Yoga asana in breast cancer, modifications

Suggested tutorials:

See the full Members only tutorials page for the complete list

Core strengthening tutorial

Osteoporosis tutorial

Lymphedema tutorial

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