Yoga is renowned for its therapeutic effects. Besides healing tired spirits, it is also beneficial for the whole body. In spite of all the benefits of yoga, people are put off by its difficult learning curve, and do not make use of this amazing invention of the Hindus.

For all those people who believe that yoga requires a person to be flexible and good at holding a pose for long, I have simple advice: Do what you can, and do your best. Instead of trying difficult poses and failing, it is better to start off with easy exercises. When you have mastered an exercise, it will increase your confidence and you will find it easier to perform a harder exercise.

A few fundamentals essential for a yoga practitioner are:

Breathing: Breathing is the basis of Yoga. Breathing is required to keep a person steady and as you stretch your breath deeper, it has a palliative effect on the mind. If you have access to a beautiful view outside your home, just sitting in the garden, breathing in and out is sure to have a positive effect on your psyche.

Foundational Poses: Just like any discipline, Yoga has its own learning curve that starts with the mastering of a few basic poses. These poses are called asana and form the basis upon which all other advanced yoga exercises are modeled.

Learning the fundamental poses is essential for mastering yoga. Here is a list of three basic yoga poses that I love to perform:

Tadasana or Standing Mountain Pose

Stand with your legs slightly less than hip distance apart. Your feet should be facing forward and need to be parallel. Now, hug your muscles into your midline. Pull the tops of your thighs back and balance that with lengthening your tailbone down towards the floor. Now it’s time to pull your shoulders back while keeping your neck straight. Open the heart, and align the crown of your head directly over the center of your body. This completes the Tadasana.

Virabhadrasana 1 or Warrior 1

You need to be in mountain pose for performing this yoga pose. Step a foot out one stride forward. Now, turn the heel of the opposite foot slightly angled so that it faces the top corner of your mat. Feet should be hip distance apart instead of in line with each other. Bend your front knee 90 degrees so your thigh is parallel with the floor. Depending on your flexibility you might not be able to get the perfect 90-degree angle. In this case focus on your base, feet, and leg position. Extend your arms over your head and make sure to keep both hips squared forward.

Adho Mukha Svanasana or Downward Facing Dog

Get on your hands and knees on the mat with elbows and wrist in line directly under your shoulders. Align the creases of your wrists so that they are parallel with the front edge of your mat. Focus on your hands. Make sure that the hands are firmly planted. Walk your knees back, so that they are slightly behind your hips. Turn your feet under so they are planted firmly on the floor. Your heels may or may not touch; focus on grounding them towards the earth. Lift your knees off the floor and keep them slightly bent. Now, straighten your arms, pulling your shoulder blades together on the center of your back while opening your chest. Lengthen your tailbone towards the ceiling, and press your thighs back and straighten your legs.