Here is my story, my practice:
Many of us started our yoga journey because of different reasons - be it accompanying a friend, "just" trying out, wanting a good stretch, or because it is convenient as you do not have to carry any equipment with you. For me, I started my yoga journey in 2015 hoping to move towards a "gentle" exercise. That's right... like many people - "gentle" was the first impression I had when I thought of yoga. My first yoga lesson was Hatha Yoga and I found myself intensively flowing through a series of Warrior Poses! But before that, I did quite a couple of Sun Salutations as warm-ups! I thought to myself that Hatha Yoga for a first-timer could be a good start. Do you remember what was your first impression of yoga and how you felt after the first class?
Getting Ready for Your Practice
Planning and deciding your intention for your yoga practice is essential. If you often find yourself wondering what you should do after Sun Salutations, perhaps you have not set a clear intention for your yoga practice. Try asking yourself - "What do you want to achieve today?" Take it easy and focus on having 1-2 intentions for each practice. Some examples could be improving flexibility, improving backbends, strengthening core muscles, or working on arm balances and inversions. The time you plan to commit to your yoga practice will help you decide your intention to an extent. Most importantly, think about your current emotions and energy level. How do you design a yoga practice for yourself? Here are some examples which will lead to the type of yoga you are going to practice:
To work on your core, you want to eventually incorporate yoga poses that require the engagement of your core muscles. The sequence can go like this: Sun Salutations, Warm-up Poses, Peak Pose (Optional), Strengthening, Cool-down
If you are looking for a good stretch, think about where you feel the stiffness before you start stretching - your back, shoulders, or hamstrings? You can design a sequence that goes likes this: Sun Salutations, Warm-up Poses, Step-by-step stretching at targeted areas, Cool-down
For something more challenging, perhaps like inversions, take some time to think about what type of inversions or which pose do you intend to embark on today? You can design a sequence to include: Sun Salutations, Warm-up Poses, Breakdown of Peak Pose (an inversion), Peak Pose, Strengthening, Cool-down