Should you take a mentor to start your yoga practice? Of course a Big Yes… The first thing to start with your yoga practice would be your mental strength and then continuity to give 20-30 mins of time everyday.
Then, probably, we may need proper guidance on the followings:
1. Which asana to approach?
2. Which asana to avoid, why and when?
3. How to go into the posture?
4. What has to be the breathing counts and connections?
5. How much time to stay in the posture?
6. How to come out safely from the posture?
7. When to go for variations?
8. How to deepen the posture?
9. What all alignments to be focused upon?
10. Where should be the awareness?
11. Whether my posture is correct or not?
12. Which counter-pose asana we should do?
13. What should be the sequence and counts for asana practice?
14. Every day, should we do same or change the practice?
These all questions you may find on internet and books, but, the most important thing is whether you are doing correctly or not?? Then comes the need of good mentor.
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However, yoga practicing under Guru (mentor) has totally different experience.
I will share one of my experience, almost a decade ago, I started my yoga practice from watching some Channel on TV and also following few books. While practicing Trikonasana before, I was easily able to touch the ground, and I was very much sure that I was right. But, the day my guru has lifted my palms from ground and fixed it to shin (just below the knee), I was shocked. “Why, what happened, what I am doing wrong?” Then, she asked me to keep the chest open and expanded rather collapsing to the ground. The moment, I pulled my chest up and opened it as recommendation, I realized the importance of good mentor.
Corrections in the Trikonasana
You might be practicing left one, and feeling correct, but, it has to be done similar to right side picture. At the same time, you cant reach to higher level of the posture without practice, it takes time. Everyone has to cross the basic and intermediate level.
How mentor will support you to go more deeper into the posture through adding variations, even if your body is not supporting to reach to that level?
Of course, learning yoga from book, TV, internet will work but only then, when you have at least 2-3 months of training under good mentor. So my dear friends! please, give a try learning yoga under good mentor and experience the change.