Read these 12 Yoga Equipment Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Yoga tips and hundreds of other topics.
Some yoga teachers provide small herbal eye pillows as an optional yoga accessory to use during savasana (corpse pose) or another final relaxation pose. If you practice yoga at home, you can keep your eye pillow in the freezer for an extra dose of relief to tired eyes and face during your final relaxation pose. Or, if you're in the mood for soothing warmth, microwave the eye pillow on high for one minute. You can purchase eye pillows at spas or bath and body care stores, as well as stores that carry yoga equipment and yoga supplies.
Consider a yoga sandbag if you want a multipurpose yoga accessory. Placing a yoga sandbag on your thigh helps you deepen standing poses such as Warrior 1 by encouraging your thigh to drop closer to the floor. Or you can use a pair of sandbags, one on each thigh, to help open your hips when sitting in bound angle pose. You can even sit on the sandbag for a extra lift when doing seated poses such as forward bends, as an alternative to sitting on a folded blanket, a block, or a wedge. You can by sandbags from makers of yoga supplies and props such as Gaiam, or from stores and websites such as yoga.com that sell yoga supplies.
If you suffer from stiff wrists, try this less common but useful piece of yoga equipment: A yoga wedge. A yoga wedge placed under the heels of your hands can help relieve wrist discomfort when doing backbends or arm balancing poses. You can also use the wedge as a shoulder support for shoulder balancing poses, plus it works as a lift under your sit bones to help with forward bends (as an alternative to sitting on a folded blanket). A standard wooden yoga wedge is 24 inches long, and about 3.5 inches wide and 1.5 inches high at the
Certain forms of yoga require yoga equipment in order to practice them properly. What exactly is required or suggested depends on the style of yoga. Hatha yoga and Iyengar yoga involve blocks, blankets, and/or straps, for example. A yoga mat is required for nearly every form of yoga in order to keep you comfortable during meditation and to pad your feet and hands during poses.
Once you have incorporated yoga into your life, you may wish to pick up a yoga accessory or two. A basic accessory is incense. During your home practice, filling the air with the soothing scent of incense will transport you to a state of peace that allows your body and mind to become absorbed in your practice. Music for yoga is also a great tool. There are plenty of soothing (or invigorating) CDs available for you to listen to as you meditate or move.
Using a strap can help you more easily reach proper alignment while your flexibility increases. Although you can purchase straps from most companies that sell yoga props, you can take an old necktie to use as your strap instead. Neckties are usually the right lengths for most people. And since most men have some neckties they'll never wear … you can probably get them for FREE!
Another useful tool in yoga practice is the yoga ball. These balls come in a wide range of sizes. Larger balls are great for lying back on for ab strengthening as well as back stretching. Smaller balls are often used to work specific areas of the body such as arms and legs. Overall, using yoga balls develops flexibility and muscle strength regardless of where they are used. This results in an ability to better execute more difficult poses during your practice.
Although not required, a yoga mat can provide a good, stable surface for standing poses. It will also provide a non-slippery area for balancing poses. If you don't want to invest in a yoga mat, a large carpet remnant is also suitable, and it provides extra cushioning on wood or linoleum floors.
The most essential yoga accessory is the yoga mat. A variety of mats are available for different levels of practice. Each mat id designed to keep your body cushioned and warm during classes. Also, a mat is a great way to mark out your space in class, particularly when the group is a large one. Mats come in a variety of colors, lengths, and thicknesses, depending on your needs and preferences. Also, the price range varies to accommodate nearly any budget.
The best way to protect your yoga mat is to purchase a yoga mat bag. These cylindrical bags are designed with enough space so that you can simply roll up your mat after class and slide it in. Most bags also offer side straps that allow you to sling your ma on your back like a backpack. This positioning keeps the bag out of your way during commutes and in crowds. Like the mats themselves mat bags come in a variety of colors and styles to suit your taste.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|