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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May. 10, 2009
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    NC piedmont
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    2,147

    Default So...Yoga. Is there hope for me?

    Anyone on here do it? Please tell me it gets easier!

    I'm working on losing some weight and getting in better shape (that sound you heard was a sigh of relief from my horse), and I really want to make yoga a part of it.

    The problem? I am totally uncoordinated. I always have been. (I'm not kidding. I got kicked out of ballet class when I was about 7 or 8 because I was THAT hopeless.) Will I ever learn to be at least passable at these positions?

    I can deal with it being hard; I want it to be hard. I'm not particularly flexible, but that I can live with. But the "tree"...holy cats, will I ever be able to stay in it for more than 2 seconds? That one's the hardest, I think as I build strength, I'll be able to do most of them, but a couple are iffy. I also have way shorter arms than the lady on the video, and that is a challenge. I love the way I feel afterwards, but I know I'd reap more benefits if I could do it right and not just bumble along with the video.

    So, anyone else here learn to do yoga properly despite being hopelessly uncoordinated and totally ungraceful?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov. 28, 2000
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
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    10,594

    Default

    I do yoga, and I think one of the most important things to remember is that you are doing it for yourself, at your own speed, at your own ability.
    It should NOT be hard, and it should absolutely not be painful.
    Start with the simplest of movements, breathing, stretching.
    If you are doing it along with a video, and they are doing something you can't do, go back to something you CAN do, and keep breathing.

    Can you find beginner classes in your area? It would definitely help to have guidance and encouragement. I don't know how old you are, but if you are older, find classes for older adults.
    Everyone there will have issues, and you won't feel bad about yourself.

    Good luck!
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 7, 2002
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    3,837

    Default

    I definitely recommend starting out in a class. You can hurt yourself if you don't do it properly. A good yoga instructor will prevent any injury and really help you by physically putting you in the correct positions. But you need a good one. Try to get recommendations from people you trust.

    Yoga IS self-paced, as mentioned above, and everyone can do it!
    Ottbs - The finish line is only the beginning!



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct. 16, 2008
    Location
    Central Oklahoma
    Posts
    3,102

    Default

    Yeah, it gets easier, much easier, but, are you doing it on your own or under an instructor? Most poses are built up slowly to it. Tree for example, you don't just get there without going through "mini" tree first. If you are doing it on your own, I strongly suggest you to find a good instructor. My husband is highly uncoordinated - he can twist on his own two legs just by walking, but he can now do poses he had no business doing before.

    Also, if you have problem with tree, it is probably relating to your core strength.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2010
    Posts
    5,952

    Default

    I've been doing yoga/pilates about two years. Yes, it gets easier, and it never does. Just when you think you've "finally" gotten stronger and more even, you find MORE places you need to work on!

    I used to TRY to do some exercises that I thought were impossible--yeah right. Finally I have a bit of strength and can do them. Others were really easy for me, and killing other people. From riding, I find I am WAY stronger in the back and butt than others.

    The balance takes time, as with everything else. I cannot sit crosslegged because my left hip will not open, so, while I can do the tree and stand one legged on my left leg and put my right over the knee and bend, I cannot do it the opposite way.

    Stick with it. It helps a lot. I do classes, which may help in understanding more. You will always never be good enough, but you will get stronger. You will not lose fat. Sigh. I can FEEL my tight, strong muscles under my layer of fat. Sigh. Apparently riding two horses a day, climbing up hills, and yoga and pilates is not enough for that. I need to go to my kickboxing class in an hour. Want to feel uncoordinated? Try that.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb. 23, 2009
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    1,233

    Default

    I got much better when I switched from videos to a class (now my hours are so crazy I'm back to videos, but I have the foundation from the classes to get me through, and I'll drop in on a Saturday class on occasion for a "refresher"). I am about as ungraceful as they come so if I can do it, you can, too! When I need inspiration, I watch this guy:

    http://youtu.be/qX9FSZJu448

    If he can do it, I can too! Like others have said, you do it for yourself. No matter how quickly or slowly you get a handle on a pose, you eventually do get there. Like Arthur says, "just because I can't do it today, doesn't mean I'm not going to be able to do it someday!"
    If it were easy, everybody would do it.

    Equi-Sport Services



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2001
    Location
    Packing my bags
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    31,896

    Default

    you practice on a regular basis you will get better, more flexible, stronger. (of course you have to practice perfectly meaning, getting the form right)

    every activity will be hard at first.
    I was pretty coordinated when I started taekwondo, and I felt I had to relearn walking!

    just going 3 times a week for about an hour I became pretty flexible (like, kicking people in the head flexible )
    Quote Originally Posted by Mozart View Post
    Personally, I think the moderate use of shock collars in training humans should be allowed.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    NorthEast
    Posts
    24,508

    Default

    I can do kick-boxing, but can't do step-aerobics or Zumba or anything like that. I screw up the whole class, LOL! I get so many moves behind and have zero sense of rythm that after a while I just make up my own moves.

    I also have issues doing yoga, some is uncoordinated. The rest is some parts of me can't support me very well so I crash/fall. And some is because I have to really watch/concentrate on each position and when you're IN a position, you can't see the instructor or TV anymore, LMAO!

    I still do some yoga and pilates. Huge benefit for working out and/or tightness. But by itself, without diet change and cardio, it's not going to aide in weight or inches lost. It will still benefit you though.

    For lack of coordination, maybe try Tai Chi? (sp?) Slow, fluid moves and easier to follow along. (and I fall less, LOL)

    For weight loss and cardio that isn't mind-numbingly boring and hateful (I loathe cardio) try dancing. And by that I mean crank up the radio/iPod loud, put on fast music you love and go bananas! Dance like nobody is watching. Dance like a spider monkey on crack. It's fun a wicked good mood-booster too! And easy to time. Start with 2-3 songs. And time it by songs as you build up. Not by watching a clock. You can also have fun making play-lists of music to get funky by.

    It's the only cardio I can do on a regular basis and not get stabby and want to kill somebody. Anybody. Cardio to increase the happy instead of cardio to increase the homicidal feelings that cardio causes.
    You jump in the saddle,
    Hold onto the bridle!
    Jump in the line!
    ...Belefonte



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb. 23, 2009
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    1,233

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MistyBlue View Post
    Dance like a spider monkey on crack.
    If it were easy, everybody would do it.

    Equi-Sport Services



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2010
    Posts
    5,952

    Default

    Man, the guy in the video lost 100 lbs! That is NOT fair! Men!

    The video is good to show how LITTLE steps eventually add up. I feel like that sometimes. You also need to adjust for what works. I like pilates more than yoga because yoga requires a lot of pressure on knees, elbows, and wrists, which i can't do. I have really bad joints. I HATE downward dog and have to do it on my knuckles because my wrists hurt so bad, and doing stuff like cobra on your wrists is SO much harder. Also, certain moves just kill me knees. You do what you can. The good thing about having a class is they can constantly remind you of how to modify.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    May. 10, 2009
    Location
    NC piedmont
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    Default

    I'd love to do a class, but it won't fit in the budget right now. I hit the treadmill and ride, too, but I want to add the yoga to improve core strength and flexibility. It is hard, but not at all painful. I'm just uncoordinated. I'll check out the video, though. Any more good websites or videos i should check out?

    Thanks for the encouragement, hopefully I'll get so I can do at least some of the positions without falling over.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    NorthEast
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    Default

    It's good for balance! Do you have a nearby YMCA? They often have free yoga classes around here. Or check youtube for videos of classes. Or do you have Comcast cable? The On Demand has a few yoga videos on it. I tried those, there are different types of yoga which I had no idea about. The physical therapist told me I should do...crap...I think it's called Restorative Yoga? But different types give different results. Maybe someone who knows more can tell you which type to try.

    BTDT...that's my problem with yoga. My shoulders are my worst joints and in some positions the pressure is either too much and it hurts a *lot* if it's a bad-shoulder day or they just give out and I crash. (which also doesn't feel too good, LOL) The wrists sometimes go on me too. Always a fun crap-shoot to find out which joints decide not to work on which days. And certain yoga moves you really can't swap using different joints because it hurts, I know how it feels.
    You jump in the saddle,
    Hold onto the bridle!
    Jump in the line!
    ...Belefonte



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2010
    Posts
    5,952

    Default

    Yeah. I don't do some. The one where you squat between your knees? Impossible for me. I have probably pretty major joint deterioration from being on prednisone for two years a kid, before they knew how bad it was. I guess I'm just glad I can walk, and never really wanted to jump much.

    Normally I can accomodate. I did something in yoga on Saturday, though, and my knee has been tricky since, like I'm very careful about not turning while standing on it.

    I don't know if they have 24 hour fitness there. I HATE gyms, but here you can get on as a family member if someone else has a membership for $25 a month. Even at one class a week that's worth it for me, and I try to do 2 to 4. I don't even use the pool, sauna, treadmill or weights. I NEED the humiliation of having to keep at it by having people around me.

    You know, my shoulders were always sore when I started. They're a lot better now. Actually forcing them to move more helped. Did I also say I'm addicted to the back cracking? Especially in pilates. Certain moves give the best back cracks.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan. 10, 2008
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    5,871

    Default

    If you can possibly find a way of getting to a class at least a couple of times, that might help a lot, because a good instructor will teach the different modifications and variations for a pose, and then it's easier to figure out what works for you when you practice at home. So some positions I'm really comfortable with and can do a more advanced bind or variation, and then other ones I have to use a strap and blocks and do the super-easy geriatric arthritic adaptation--but at least I now have a much better sense of how to develop a pose rather than just feeling crappy because I can't do it.

    Check out Groupon, Living Social, etc.--I know around here there are frequently specials offered by local yoga studios! The one I go to occasionally has a 5 class for $15 pass, which is awesome.
    "Remain relentlessly cheerful."

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  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun. 7, 2002
    Posts
    3,837

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    Yes a good instructor will always give you modifications / alternate poses. I have a bad back and bad wrists (no Cobra for me!), and so I told my instructor about it before taking my very first class. She told me what alternate poses I could do.
    Ottbs - The finish line is only the beginning!



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Oct. 16, 2008
    Location
    Central Oklahoma
    Posts
    3,102

    Default

    Y membership is only something like $40/month for a family membership - cheaper for individual membership but I can't remember what it is. The one close to my work has five yoga classes a week. That is actually where I started. I know you said your budget does not allow it, but please do try to budget a couple of classes somehow. Oh and when you do go to a class, try to get to the front row - all the balance poses become increasingly more difficult if you get bunch of folks flailing and falling down when you try to balance



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec. 21, 2005
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    1,876

    Default

    I do it as part of the P90X program. I HATE it with a flaming hot passion, but I do it because I know of the benefits. I do 45 minutes of Vinyasa and 45 of balance poses. I can hold a crane for 10 seconds now! That's a huge deal for me.
    "Is it ignorance or apathy? Hey, I don't know and I don't care." ~Jimmy Buffett



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb. 18, 2001
    Location
    New York, NY
    Posts
    6,878

    Default

    Yes! I'm a 200-Hour RYT (Registered Yoga Teacher) and my mom is 500-Hour E-RYT (Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher—the highest qualification in America).

    I'm not particularly coordinated OR well-balanced—it just takes a lot of time and hard work. Remember how hard it was learning to post the trot when you first started riding? It's sort of like that.

    I would be careful about taking classes at the YMCA or 24-Hour Fitness (or any "fitness"-orientated place). A lot of instructors there (not all) are not knowledgeable about all of the modifications and adaptations that can be made for those with old injuries or those who are struggling. It never ends well when you're pushed into a pose you can't do.

    BUT on the bright side, a lot of really good yoga studios do a donation class every week. This is usually a "pay as you wish" class, designed for people who either a) can't afford it, b) just want to get their feet wet before committing or c) just want to add an extra class to their practice. I'd encourage you to see if a studio in your area does this. Beyond that, read Yoga Journal's website—so many great flows that you can do right in your living room.

    I'm terribly out of practice right now, but it can make a tremendous difference in your life when you're fit and regularly practicing. My mom doesn't teach as much as she used to and now practices bikram three times a week—a set sequence of poses in a 107 degree heated room.



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