One of the benefits of yoga is that we can do it everywhere, and this versatility can make choices more difficult sometimes. Yoga at home or at a studio? What is best, what are the pros and cons of each?
I first started practisting in a studio, specifically in Indaba yoga at Marylebone in London. It was a few months later when I started doing yoga at home, specially as the weather got colder. In my newbie opinion, I do think studio yoga is the best way to start, especially if you are lucky enough to have a great teacher that hooks you into it! While home yoga is best to perfect. Anyhow, here is a summary of each option, enjoy!
Studio yoga – Pros and cons
In my experience, practising in a yoga studio definitely pushes me more. Having a good yoga teacher guiding me, helps me discover new asanas and provides guidance. Doing a 60-90 minutes class also makes me sweat, and relaxes me more, than any yoga that I can do at home. Overall, the physical sensations and feeling of being “on a cloud”, only happen to me when I go to a good studio class.
Studio yoga is also more social, you can see other great yogis and ask them questions, get help from them or from the teacher to improve your posture and learn by seeing.
The cons of going to a studio in comparison to practising at home are that, of course, it is more time consuming. You have to get there, shower, get back… All in all, it can add up an extra hour to the practise. Studio yoga also comes at a cost, and that cost can be a bit pricey sometimes, with most of the studios not charging less than £100 a month (buying class passes vouchers helps sometimes).
Another problem with classes is they often can be very busy, with no space to move freely, or being scared to try a headstand in case you hit someone on the way. Also, classes can sometimes be too fast or slowly paced, too soft or too hard, depending on where you are in your yoga journey. Plus not giving you enough time to focus on the asanas you really want to work on.
Home yoga – Pros and cons
In your house you are the boss, so you decide what to do, when, how often, at what pace, etc. In my opinion, home yoga really helps to improve on certain postures, and practise the most challenging asanas that I’m excited about, such as arm balances. Once you have some basics, it really helps to spend time practising at home and seeing your progress. Because with home yoga, you do progress!
Another good thing is that yoging at home is free of cost, plus not time consuming in terms of transport – which makes it easier and can help us fit yoga time in a busy day. Yoga at home also allows me correct my postures. At home, I can video myself, see my asanas in action and then be able to improve them… apart from getting some cool shots for Instagram on the way! 😉
Finally, the problem of yoga home practise is that it can be more distracting. I don’t relax as much, or push myself as hard as I would do in a class with a teacher. Because at home you are guided by your own desires, your practise could get a bit stuck if you only repeat the same postures again and again.
For someone who is brand new in yoga, I would always recommend going to a studio first. As the practise evolves, a mix of home and studio yoga is the best to keep learning while perfecting the tricky bits. I suppose for the most advanced yogis, or those who have done teacher training, guiding themselves at home would be easier. The Ashtanga yoga series is also something worth considering when doing self-practise, as well as the fantastic options we have online.
If you are a yogi or new at yoga, where would you prefer to practise and why?