How to get your yoga
postures correct?

Thumb rule for breathing right in yoga postures

  • While getting into a yoga posture, stretching in the pose, or making an effort -> breathe in
  • Holding a posture -> breathe normally
  • Returning to normal position (coming out of the pose) -> breathe out
  • Pay more attention to the outgoing breath. This will help you relax more and more in the posture.


This pattern may vary for certain yoga poses. Your Sri Sri Yoga teacher will provide you detailed instructions.

Patanjali (the sage who consolidated precious yoga knowledge in the classic ancient text, Patanjali Yoga Sutras) defines a yoga posture as that which is both steady and comfortable Sthira Sukham Asanam ). A key point to remember when you get started with your yoga posture practice. Also, before practicing yoga poses (called asanas in Sanskrit) on your own, it is good to attend a yoga class to learn the correct way of practicing yoga postures. At Sri Sri Yoga classes, you will learn to practice yoga postures so that they not only provide an excellent body workout but also make the mind happy and centered.

  1. Going into the yoga pose

  2. Holding the yoga pose

  3. Coming out of the yoga pose

Getting into the yoga pose

A good beginning determines the rest. If you get into the yoga pose correctly, you are more likely to get the remaining flow of the posture right. All you need to do is get into the pose with awareness. Be aware of the stretch where it happens, bring your attention to the breathing pattern (whether it is relaxed or forced), and also keep the awareness on your state of mind. Awareness enhances harmony between the body, breath, and mind, giving you a deeper and complete experience.

Holding the yoga pose

Relax! According to Patanjali Yoga Sutras, after putting effort to get into a yoga pose, simply let go and relax. Your yoga posture practice need not be a struggle to reach some goal or to be 100 percent perfect in the pose. To relax in the posture, simply move from the idea of doing the yoga pose ‘perfectly’ to doing it ‘correctly’. Also, a bit of awareness on the breath and a gentle smile on the face help! Try this out for yourself, it works. Smile and keep taking long and deep breaths as you hold the yoga pose. Pritika Nair, Sri Sri Yoga Course participant shares, “Can you imagine smiling as you hold the Superman Pose? Our yoga teacher at the course asked us to do just this and it works amazingly well! I suddenly felt so relaxed in the pose and was actually able to hold it.”

Coming out of the yoga pose

Just as getting into the yoga pose correctly is important, so is coming out of it the right way. Do it with awareness, coordinating each body movement with the breath as you gently come out of the pose and move into the resting position. Follow the same sequence for coming out as for going into the posture, this time in reverse order.

It is important to warm up before practicing yoga poses. Similarly, it is important to cool off before you get off the yoga mat. End your yoga posture session by resting in Corpse Pose (Shavasana) or do Yoga Nidra.

These are the basic points that you need to keep in mind while practicing yoga poses. Once you are comfortable with a few basic poses, follow these tips to improve your yoga pose practice.

Yoga practice helps develop the body and mind bringing a lot of health benefits yet is not a substitute for medicine. It is important to learn and practice yoga techniques under the supervision of a trained Sri Sri Yoga teacher. In case of any medical condition, practice yoga techniques after consulting a doctor and an Sri Sri Yoga teacher. Find an Sri Sri Yoga course at an Art of Living Center near you. Do you need information on courses or share feedback? Write to us at