How To Speak Yogi

Trying a new activity can be scary, especially when it comes to fitness classes. It’s hard to walk into a class and try something new, surrounded by regulars who you might not know. First thing’s first: Find a beginner’s class and tell the instructor that it’s your first time.

At the beginning of class, there might be a mantra or set of oms given by the instructor. Feel free to participate or not. Here are some other common terms you might need to know:

Pranayama: Controlled breathing. Different techniques will be used for different classes, but they each fall under this term.

Asana: Physical poses. In common usage, this term is used to describe a series of movements or one single pose. For example, child’s pose is an asana.

Vinyasa: A style of yoga, one of the most popular classes we have for beginners. Vinyasa focuses on a flowing sequence of movements connected to breathing.

Drishti: Your gaze. While in a pose that requires balance and attention, your instructor will tell you to focus your “drishti” to help you balance with ease and create self-awareness.

Savasana: Corpse pose. You’ll be asked to lie flat in savasana at the end of your class for a short, guided meditation to unwind after all the asanas you’ve done.

Namaste: The bow. At the end of your class, the instructor will ask you to sit up (usually cross-legged) and to end class will say “Namaste” while bowing. In response, you’ll repeat this blessing and return the bow.

Ready to roll out your mat? Visit for a complete list of yoga classes for any level.

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