Yoga For Absolute Beginners
4.7 (57 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
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Yoga For Absolute Beginners

A Perfect Place to Start Your Yoga Practice
4.7 (57 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
475 students enrolled
Created by Claire Hartley
Last updated 7/2016
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Current price: $10 Original price: $45 Discount: 78% off
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  • 3 hours on-demand video
  • 2 Supplemental Resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • Identify the basic poses taught in foundational yoga
  • Learn step by step how to get in and out of a variety of yoga posture safely
  • Build a yoga practice from the ground up without any prior experience with confidence
  • Practice yoga with the help of props which can help increase range of motion and decrease intensity
  • Learn the names of the most commonly practiced yoga postures in English and in Sanskrit
  • Gain confidence and strength to be able to practice yoga at home or in any Yoga setting
  • Develop strength and flexibility at your own pace
  • Learn the poses individually to gain more overall intelligence in the body and mind
  • Practice a full and well-rounded basic vinyasa flow class
  • Learn basic yoga breath
  • Learn basic mindfulness meditation
View Curriculum
  • You will need a yoga mat.
  • A yoga block is useful for beginning students.
  • I teach how to sit up with blankets, you can use a cushion instead.

Learn the basic yoga poses given in most level beginner yoga classes in detail in the comfort of your own home. Step by step instruction will give you confidence in your alignment and greatly enhance your knowledge of what modern day yoga poses have to offer.

Build a strong foundation in Yoga Asanas, increase your knowledge of healthy alignment, strength and yoga vocabulary in this course for beginners.

  • Increase flexibility and strength.
  • Address common misalignment issues
  • Gain better posture
  • Work step be step on individual yoga postures at your own pace
  • Master Yogic breathing
  • Work confidently up to a full 50 minute yoga class

Yoga is for Every-Body

Learn the basics of a yoga practice from a 20 year veteran. Claire teaches in short form videos the essential yoga postures that bring you all the way up to building a full and satisfying yoga class.

The course is laid out in an intelligent and sequential manner so your body opens slowly and builds on the pose given prior as well as great detail in each video so you can avoid common alignment mistakes that hinder a yoga practice and can cause injury.

Content Overview

Yoga is incredibly for increasing your range of motion, building strength in the entire body and decreasing common aches and pains, but without proper alignment and direction we may find that we are actually aggravating our pain rather then healing it. Claire has created 20 short detailed tutorials that show you step by step how to enter into the fundamentals poses of yoga and how to gain the most out of them no matter what stage you are in your yoga practice. Through these 20 videos she addresses common misalignment issues and gives you solutions to continue to grow in your yoga practice even if your range of motion is small and you require a lot of strength building work. 

The videos build on each other, so if you only get to 2 or 3 in a session you will find that you can stop there and still gain a lot from only 15 or 20 mins of work that day.  Each day you can add another posture and because of the way the postures are listed, you will safely continue to build on the prior session and gain more control over your body and practice.

Once you have completed all of the 20 videos and have spent some time practicing with each one you will be able to move onto the 50 minute beginner flow class.  While the pace picks up here and you will feel you really got a workout you will be move from one pose to the next, knowing where you are in your body and in the practice and confidently make adjustments to suit you. You will also be able to walk into any beginner yoga class with a vast database of knowledge and the awareness of what your body needs and what it is capable of, thereby avoiding injury and progressing much quicker then those who haven't studied slowly and in depth.

Who is the target audience?
  • This course is for anyone who feels they need a step by step guide on how to build to a basic vinyasa flow yoga class first by breaking down the poses step by step and then building up to a beginners flow class. There foundation of the class is standing poses so this course is not suitable for anyone who doesn't feel they can approach the yoga practice on their feet first.
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Curriculum For This Course
21 Lectures
Preparing your equipment
1 Lecture 02:58

Yoga props can be really useful to help you get the most out of your practice and help you adjust and modify a postures intensity as well as increase your ability to feel a posture for a longer period of time. They can also create more ease and help you out of unnecessary discomfort. 

Preview 02:58
Simple warm ups to ease the body and mind
5 Lectures 28:26

Yoga breath is discussed as well as proper breathing patterns.  The yoga breath or 'ujjayi' is explained throughly and practiced in a simple practice that can be done standing or seated. 

Ujjayi Breath

Childs pose is a restful pose where the back is stretched and extended but when we're stiff it can be hard to rest in. This lesson gives us lots of options to use padding to help get the most out of this wonderful calming and restorative posture.

Preview 03:45

Yoga can demand a lot on the wrist with weight bearing poses. We also over use the small ligaments in the wrists through our personal devices and our wrists and hands become stiff and painful. These four stretches will open and bring back flexibility and strength to the hands and wrists and bring back strength and stability. 

Wrist Stretches

Mountain pose or Tadasana is the building block for good posture, healthy alignment and the building block for all standing poses in Yoga.  Here the different types of body are discussed to help you identify how you're coming into your yoga practice.  Mountain pose is worked from the ground up. 

Mountain Pose

How to get into downward facing dog. The most common issues and obstacles to getting into this posture. Lots of information on what has to lengthen and where the weight of the posture should be. We'll look at the shape of the downward dog, what it should look and what it should not look like and how to achieve it. 

Downward Facing Dog
Standing Postures for strength focus and agility
6 Lectures 41:40

We learn all the different components of a beginner sun salute. Each pose is broken down and explained.  

Preview 07:58

One full beginner sun salute is performed here without stopping but with full instruction. Practice this at any time of day.

Sun Salute Part 2

Triangle pose is a standing posture that's one of the most popular postures in all asana traditions. It stretches the back and creates space in all parts of the body. Here we practice 2 versions, the first version we use a chair to place our hand for more stability and ease.  The second side we go deeper and place the hand closer to the floor on a block.

Triangle Pose

Warrior 2 is a strong standing posture that builds strength in the legs and hips as well as flexibility in the hips and shoulders. It prepares us for other standing postures and builds stamina and grace. Like the peaceful warrior we begin to see all discomfort begins and ends with us!

Warrior 2

Extended side angle posture is a standing posture and one of the most vigorous ones that further strengthens the whole body and creates length in the sides of the body and opens up the shoulder girdle. The first modified example can be done without props. The second variation goes deeper and the hand goes on a block on the floor for a deep release and more resistance work in the legs.

Extended Side Angle Posture

Learn how to transition from downward facing dog into the standing crescent pose. This helps build strength and mobility and increases our flexibility. This action begins to set us up for moving forward towards a vinyasa flow practice. An explanation on why its important to be able to pick ourselves up in this way. The principle of using the earth to get light is explored.

Downward Dog To Crescent Pose
Back extensions
2 Lectures 11:39

Locust pose is a simple back bend thats done lying on the floor. It can strengthen all the muscles on the back and is especially helpful for getting to the smaller muscles between the spine.  Two arm variations are explained and demonstrated. 

Locust Pose

Bridge pose is a back extension that strengthens the entire back body and uses the entire back of the leg. Our lives are spent in hunched over positions that weaken the back body and can bring on pain in the back and neck. Bridge pose will strengthen all the areas that are weak and bring support to the back body. 

Bridge Pose Alt.
Seated Poses for back body release .
4 Lectures 25:38

This seated forward fold is done on an angle so that it opens the lower back slowly as well as stretching the back body, hamstrings and hips. 

Janu Sirsasana- Head of the Knee Pose -Forward Fold

Seated spinal twist keeps our spine rejuvenated and healthy. This pose is shown from the ground up, how to get a healthy twist slowly and with care.  

The modified version and the full of the pose is explained and demonstrated. 

Seated Spinal Twist

Baddha Konasana or bound angle pose stretches the inner legs and hips. The prep pose of staying seated is shown as well as the forward folded version. 

Bound Angle Pose

We start with Dandasana which is staff pose. Staff pose stretches the backs of the legs and makes us use the spine and back muscles to sit upright.  Once we have mastered this seated pose we move to the seated forward fold over the legs. We look at how to fold at the correct place in the body and safely open the hamstrings and lengthen the entire spine and low back. 

Pascimottasana - West Side of Body Stretch
Rest and Meditate
2 Lectures 14:50

Savasana is the final rest that comes at the end of every yoga practice. Its a purposeful place to rest without falling asleep, the beginning of cultivating a meditation practice.  We learn how to place the body in a comfortable and purposeful place so we can stay open and still and to calm the nervous system. We rest quietly here.


An non-intimidating introduction to meditation. An explanation of what it is and what it is not. A 5 minute meditation is given at the end.

Full Vinyasa Flow Class-Put it all together!
1 Lecture 48:44

Join Claire for this 50 minute beginner flow practice. Make sure you have reviewed and practice the individual poses first. This beginner flow class can be done at any time of the day and is a full body workout. It will create flexibility and strength and will bring peace and calm to the mind. 

Beginners Yoga Flow Class
About the Instructor
Claire Hartley
4.7 Average rating
57 Reviews
475 Students
1 Course
Yoga Teacher

British born Yoga teacher, Claire Hartley has been at the forefront of the American yoga scene since 1993 when she began practicing at the Jivamukti Yoga Center in the East Village New York.  She is known for bringing the deeper layers and meaning of Yoga and Yoga philosophy through all of her classes and workshop experiences, leaving the practitioners with an experience of the authentic joyful Self. She always does this with a healthy dose of her Brit wit and sensibility! She teaches daily at her LA studio as well as traveling the country to conferences and festivals.

She moved to Los Angeles in 2001 where she continued her practice and trained with some of the best teachers in the world including an apprenticeship with Senior Iyengar teacher Lisa Walford.

In April 2006 she opened and co-founded Rising Lotus Yoga, a busy and thriving studio in Los Angeles, attracting practitioners seeking alignment based Vinyasa Yoga classes with healthy doses of dharma talks, chanting and joyful community.

In 2008 she created the popular Rising Lotus Teacher Training Program, which teaches trainees how to bring intelligent alignment and sequencing to students as well as meaningful Dharma talks. This teaching program has a reputation for excellence in Los Angeles, the capital of American yoga. 

She lives in Los Angeles, with her husband John and her daughter Nova.

A Few Testimonials

I’m grateful to have practiced with Claire for over 7 years.  As a teacher, she is nurturing and supportive yet will take you to your edge.  As a yogi, she truly walks her talk.-

Kellie Martin, actress

Claire not only teaches a wonderful yoga class for the body but for the spirit. I always look forward to stepping into her studio because I know that I will be spending the next hour and a half with a teacher that reminds me that I am exactly where I should be.  I am grateful to call her friend and  teacher.

-Gabrielle Carteris, actress, National President SAG-AFTRA

Claire Hartley is a most generous instructor.  She is a technician with a wealth of anatomical knowledge with her heart firmly planted in the roots of yogic philosophy.  Her workshops are awalsy a favorite at the festival. Joyful, informative and inspiring.  We LOVE Claire Hartley. – Joann Burnham, Producer Nantucket Yoga Festival.

Like most other people my life is busy and often chaotic . I know that a class with Claire will  calm my mind , my  body and bring me back to center .

– Amanda de Cadenet, Host of ‘The Conversation’

Fresh, authentic, generous – these are just a few words to describe Claire Hartley. Taking a class with Claire is to bask in her knowledge and passion for yoga. She is a natural teacher with a wonderful voice who delights and inspires students. Claire is truly a gem! . – Ann York, producer Iowa Yoga Festival.

I signed up for two months of weekly Personal Development training sessions with Claire because I was keen to make improvements in my life and needed help finding the tools to achieve this goal. During our relaxed discussions via ‘FaceTime,’ Claire easily zeroed in on and identified some counter-productive patterns of thought and behavior and helped me to implement some positive adjustments to my daily habits. I am gratified by what I learned and feel equipped to continue on this path of self-improvement. Mutually honoring our weekly commitment was an essential part of its ongoing success.  I am grateful for Claire’s sunny spirit, her generosity and, above all, her insightful and gentle guidance.

– Pauline A.

For 16 months after injuring my neck I experienced daily pain that limited my normal activities. I tried physical therapists, chiropractors, acupuncturists, and massage therapists but was still in pain. Claire Hartley was the answer. She continually astounds me with her knowledge of the body, positivity, and sense of humor. In addition to relief from pain, I now feel stronger and more confident in what my body can do!

– Lalo Crane