Last time, we talked about the practice of good yoga posture and different poses along with their benefits.
Today, we are going to cover some of the different types of yoga accessories and how they can enhance your yoga practice.
Good Yoga Practices
One good thing about yoga is that it can be practiced almost anywhere, without bulky equipment, and by all people of all ages.
It is best to wear loose, comfortable clothing when practicing yoga.
This allows your body to move freely without restrictions.
Jeans, cargo pants, dress pants, and tight shirts are not the best to workout in.
Yoga pants or other kinds of pants that are made from breathable, stretchy materials are best to wear.
Yoga is traditionally practiced barefoot, but if this does not suit you, you can always wear grip socks or soft-shoes.
I use my grip socks sometimes, especially if I am cold or sweating a lot (like in power or hot yoga) and my mat gets slippery.
Practicing yoga on a somewhat empty stomach is ideal so you do not have a lot of food moving around in there.
That would be super uncomfortable!🤢
If you have to eat something, then it is a good idea to consume a light snack such as an energy⚡️bar, a piece of fruit🍎 along with a glass of water💦 an hour before class.
This will help to avoid you getting hungry or dehydrated during your practice if you are super hungry and thirsty beforehand.
The Best Yoga Accessories For Your Practice
As I mentioned earlier, you don’t need anything hi-tech or fancy in order to start practicing yoga.
All you really need is the desire, a mat, and a good attitude to get started.
But this doesn’t completely eliminate the need for some yoga accessories, especially if it helps you perform each pose correctly.
Most yoga accessories are used to help you achieve proper alignment and balance as well as make each pose that you perform a little bit easier to do, especially if you are a beginner.
It decreases the stress and strain on your body from certain yoga positions as well as supports your muscles and protects them from injury.
Let’s go over some of the more basic types of yoga accessories…
While opinions vary when it comes to the proper yoga attire, ultimately the choice is up to you.
However, once again, it’s a good idea not to wear tight-fitting clothes.
You want to be able to move freely so loose-fitting clothes or clothes made specifically for yoga are the way to go.
A good yoga mat provides cushioning and comfortability on a hard floor.
This will be needed especially if your yoga studio floor is made of cement or hardwood flooring.
It can also provide traction for your hands and feet, thus preventing you from slipping or sliding while performing different poses.
There are special towels that are made for yoga especially power and Bikram yoga.
Having a super- absorbent towel can be quite useful especially if you sweat…a lot!
You may also want to look into a skid-less towel that you can use on your mat to help absorb sweat quickly.
I have 2 of those since I go to power yoga in a heated room multiple times a week.
If you buy a lot of yoga accessories you may want to buy a special yoga bag to carry them in.
They look like duffel bags and are often made of nylon, but they come in different shapes, sizes, and colors.
You can easily find one that suits your style!
I use to carry one but now I just need my mat and two blocks.
Yoga bolsters provide great support for your spine, abdomen, hips, and legs in a number of different poses.
These comfy, supportive, long ‘body’ pillows, can help you achieve better results overall.
This is also great for those poses where you may need a little bit more support like lizard and pigeon pose.
Yoga blocks are props that help make your yoga practice so much better.
These handy pieces of foam, cork or other materials are a great asset for standing poses in which your hands don’t reach the floor.
Some of these poses include triangle pose and half moon.
It makes performing these poses so much easier and it helps to improve your alignment.
I use blocks especially if my hamstrings are really tight (which is like all the time…smh🤦🏾♀️).
Wedges are great to use under your heels, tailbone, or knees when practicing forward-bending poses too.
It makes it a lot easier to place your hands flat on the floor without compromising correct form and posture.
Sometimes when I put too much pressure on my hands they begin to hurt.
Wedges or even blocks are great accessories to use to relieve that pressure.
Stability balls help you learn balance, build your strength, tone your muscles, and make it more comfortable for people with injuries to exercise.
These balls provide extra support as you stretch and are good for working out the back, hips, and core.
It is also gentle on your tailbone.
They can also be used during pregnancy, but please consult a physician👩🏾⚕️ before getting one.
You’ll need an air pump if you get one of these, but they usually come with the ball.
Blankets are a great way to feel more relaxed and comfortable during your yoga practice.
Folded blankets can be used as props to sit and lie on during class too.
I use a blanket if I don’t want to use a block for pigeon pose or when we are sitting up straight, legged crossed for meditation.
Straps are a great prop to use if you cannot reach certain body parts effectively.
They are commonly made out of cotton or nylon and can give you added flexibility so you can hold your poses a little bit longer.
These pieces of nylon are particularly useful for bound poses if your hands do not reach each other and for poses where you need to hold onto your feet, but cannot reach them.
It is very useful and helpful.
Have you ever heard of a yoga wheel?
Yea…it’s literally a wheel.
It is used for stretching and releasing the muscles in your back, neck, shoulders, as well as those deep hip flexors.
You can use this for balance poses (if you are super advanced) and it can be used to roll out other tight muscles like a foam roller would do.
They come in all different colors and sizes so you can roll out those hard to reach muscles.
It is a great tool so definitely check it out later on in your practice ☺️
You do not need this right away.
Now we all know that we need to stay hydrated throughout the day.
If you are into hot yoga or even power yoga, then you are DEFINITELY going to need to have a water bottle on hand.
Throughout the class, you are not only sweating out all those toxins, but you are also sweating out water and getting dehydrated.
So you need to be replenishing your body throughout your practice.
For all you beginner yoga enthusiasts out there, a yoga kit may be the solution to all of your problems!
A basic yoga kit contains everything you need to get started practicing the art of yoga right away.
A good kit gives you the necessary items needed for a beginners yoga class.
I didn’t buy a kit when I first started my yoga practice.
I wish I did though.
What I did buy was a yoga mat, bag, grip socks, 2 blocks, a strap and a towel for power yoga.
I have not gotten a blanket, wheel, wedge, or bolster yet.
Maybe in the future, I will grab some of those other accessories.
To Wrap Things Up…
For the most part, yoga accessories are made to provide support for you to feel more comfortable and move deeper into the poses.
Next time, we will be talking about how yoga can be used to help you manage your blood pressure and relieve stress.
To another issue of Why Yoga Matters,
P.S. – If you enjoyed this post on Part 3-The Yoga Accessories You Need (Why Yoga Matters), remember to like, share, and comment below.
P.S.S.- If you want to check out the whole ‘Why Yoga Matters’ series click HERE.
P.S.S.S. -Want to enhance your yoga practice even more? Check out the Yoga Outlet by clicking the image below! 👇🏾