We reached out to 12 local yoga teachers to hear about the best yoga advice they ever received. Here is what they had to say:


Try not to get to a certain point or place. The outcome of the yoga practice is amazing, but it is not about the destination. Enjoy where you are, focus on the present moment and embrace the process. It is all about the journey. The benefit will come with consistent practice.Saiko Malae Shima


Be patient. Be present. Be open. Keep going to class no matter what, be consistent. My mom made a bet with me: if I went to yoga three times in a row without stopping or giving up, she would pay for the classes. I hated the first class, tolerated the second and loved the third. (Thanks, Mom!)Jenniferlyn Chiemingo


‘Breathe!’ It is silly, we come to yoga class to learn correct breathing, but you can truly learn a lot about yourself [based] on the way you breathe. If you have fast, short breath, there could be a lot of stress in your life or [you’re] overwhelmed. Try to have slow, controlled breath and a more slow, controlled life!Alexis Zurdo


Your body is a temple, the more you respect it, the more it will reward you.Arundhati Baitmangalkar


For years, I was intimidated by yoga because I wasn’t naturally bendy or flexible; I couldn’t even touch my toes! On a whim one day, I decided to give yoga a try, and my very first teacher had a wonderful response when I expressed my long-held assumptions about flexibility being a prerequisite: ‘You don’t practice yoga because you are flexible,’ she told me. ‘You practice yoga to become flexible.’ Only later did I realize that she was talking about so much more than just physical flexibility — yoga teaches us to be mentally and emotionally limber, too!Jennifer Ball


‘Take what you like and leave the rest.’ One of my teachers told me that as part of teacher training, and it applies to practice, too. Teachers all cue poses differently depending on whom they’ve studied with; poses are taught differently depending on the lineage. As you practice with different teachers and learn more, you’ll start to figure out what makes sense for your body. Listen to the teacher, learn from him/her, and take away what you like and what you need.Kat Selvocki


The best yoga advice I ever received is that yoga is a practice, a process, not a fitness goal. Its purpose is to make yourself more available to your spirit, so practices are to foster that. Anna Holden


‘How you approach life on your mat is how you approach life off your mat.’ This is a constant reminder to me that by simply making shapes in space with our bodies and breathing – we are actually doing much more. Yoga is not stretching on a mat, it is constant exploration. That’s what keeps it fun, and that’s my inspiration to stay mindful.Enid Rosalyn Spitz


Practice every day. The experience after a yoga class is always great — the feeling of strength and lightness, energy and peace of mind, and confidence. But as soon as you get back into the world this feeling goes away. It is the daily practice that solidifies this feeling and propagates it from the mat into the daily life. Pavel Dmitriev


‘Anything you can’t do is simply something that you can’t do yet,’ which I heard from local yoga teacher.Gabriella Horowitz

Laura Humpf-yoga-seattle

If you are going to make up a story, why not make up a good one?Laura Humpf

We hope you enjoyed reading the advice shared by this group of local yoga teachers. This article is part of a series of articles focused on yoga for beginners including advice for your first yoga class, advice to avoid yoga injuries and insight on common yoga mistakes to avoid.

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