Mental Health Month: Top 10 At-Home Yoga Videos
In honor of Mental Health Month this May, we’ll be dedicating a series of blog posts to mental health, including important Mental Health Month topics such as anxiety, depression, stress and more. If you’re like me, yoga is a major part of balancing your general mental wellness. Even when I’m feeling sluggish and uninspired to do anything, I end up feeling amazing – physically, emotionally, and mentally – when I’m done practicing yoga, no matter how basic the practice was.
Unfortunately, many on-site yoga classes are often expensive, and the inexpensive classes tend to feature repetitive lessons and don’t really branch out to cover different poses and practices for people with specific needs and preferences. I’ve taken several on-site yoga class that I’ve loved (especially outdoor classes on the beach or in the grass), but I actually prefer doing yoga in the comfort of my own home. Maybe it’s an introvert thing, or maybe it’s because at-home yoga is free and I can do it at any time of the day or night – but I’m totally obsessed with the online classes that DoYogaWithMe offers. Some of the classes require a membership fee, but I’ve found everything I need with nothing more than my Chromebook, yoga mat, and an internet connection.
If you’re new to yoga and struggle with issues such as anxiety, depression, or stress overload (or body image issues or problems with addictions) Mental Health Month may be the perfect time to begin practicing yoga. And to get you get started, I’ve put together a list of my ten favorite at-home yoga classes – all completely free!
A Simple Beginner Class for Mental Health Month
One of the classes I practiced a lot when I first began doing yoga was Melissa Krieger’s Core Strength and Stretch class. Perfect for beginners or experienced yogis who want a relaxed practice, the 54-minute class focuses on basic yoga poses and strengthening postures.
Beginner Shoulder and Leg Strengtheners
My other favorite beginner classes are Yoga for Shoulder Strength (22 minutes) and Yoga for Leg Strength (21 minutes). When I first began practicing yoga, I enjoyed rotating these classes throughout the week so I was constantly practicing something different and working different parts of my body. After several years of doing yoga, these are still a couple of my favorite yoga classes! The videos don’t work you too hard (but still give you a little bit of next-day soreness). Plus, the classes are relaxing and Melissa does an incredible job of describing the postures so you don’t have to keep looking up at the screen the entire time.
Quick Hatha Yoga
Rachel Scott’s quick, 20-minute Yummy 20 yoga class is perfect for practicing yoga when you don’t have a whole lot of time to spare. Fantastic for beginners or intermediate yogis, the class leaves you feeling absolutely amazing in a short amount of time.
After Work Pick-Me-Up
Whether you sit all day long, spend the day on your feet, or you’re mentally exhausted after a day of work, Rachel Scott’s After Work Revitalizer and After Work Revitalizer II are wonderful classes for stretching sore, achy muscles and helping you to wind down after a long day. I love practicing both of these classes regularly and they never get old! Plus, both classes are only about 20 minutes long.
Energizing Yin/Yang Flow
Sarah Jane Steele’s Yin/Yang Flow for Energy (22 minutes) is an amazing class to practice first thing in the morning. The class helped me to feel energized, revived, and eager to take on the day ahead!
Yoga for Strength
Anastasia’s intermediate 30-minute Strengthen and Lengthen class is ideal for yogis who are looking for a lightly intense yoga practice that leaves you feeling fit and comfortable in your skin.
Letting Go of Anxiety and Negative Emotion
David’s 40-minute Yoga for Anxiety class left me feeling calm and control of my emotions and anxieties. Take this class regularly if you suffer from anxiety, depression, or negative thoughts.
Yoga for Stress Relief, Anxiety and Gratitude
As I mentioned earlier, one of the major advantages to practicing yoga is the mental and emotional benefits. This 49-minute class for Gratitude offers a nice combination of working out, stretching, and relieving feelings of negativity and worry.
Early Morning Wake-Up-Call
I love this 35-minute Rise and Shine class from Fiji McAlpine. I’m not a morning person, and I can use all the help I can get until my strong black coffee kicks in. I love taking this class first thing in the morning, or even in the afternoon or during the evening.
A Calming, Restorative & Hormone-Balancing Class
Melissa’s restorative Legs Up The Wall class is an easy, relaxing class that literally involves sitting with your legs up a wall for 19 minutes. It may sound strange (and look even stranger), but I absolutely adore this pose. I feel so relaxed and at ease in this posture, and it’s an excellent opportunity to just gather my thoughts and disconnect from the world for a while.
Plus, sitting with your legs up the wall has some pretty amazing health benefits as well. My favorite MD., Dr. Sara Gottfried, explains that sitting with your legs up a wall (or putting your legs above your heart) helps to counterbalance fight-or-flight responses. I don’t know about you, but I can definitely use some help with this since I seem to spend the majority of my life in fight-or-flight mode.
For more information on balancing your hormones, I’d highly recommend reading Dr. Gottfried’s book, The Hormone Cure. I’ve personally read the book and am a huge fan of her tips and advice on balancing your hormones as naturally as possible.
Share Your Favorite Videos!
Stay tuned for more Mental Health Month posts during the month of May!