I tend to be a minimalist when it comes to yoga gear, especially if I am lugging it to class. But I do believe the right equipment is essential to any at-home practice. Here are my few must haves to help you get out of your head and into your heart during practice:
1. Cotton Yoga Clothing. I might be the odd-man-out here but as much as I love wearing activewear every moment of every day I honestly don't like the feeling of the high-tec, moisture-wicking, constrictive pricey yoga clothing, especially during practice. I find most of it to be too-tight, itchy and uncomfortable, especially if I am going to be sweating (which I am likely to do during an at home, uninhibited flow when all my crazy comes out). I much prefer light-weight, fully organic cotton pieces like these from one of my favorite brands, Soul Flower. They are so comfortable and I love that they move with my body, rather than against it.
2. Yoga Blocks and Strap. I resisted buying my own set of yoga blocks for YEARS. I'm embarrassed to admit that I thought I was too good for them (how un-yoga of me). Even though I am quick to grab them in a studio setting I would just think, "my practice is far too advanced, I don't need blocks at home." The day I gave in and bought a set was the day my practice finally did improve. It clicked - we use props to help us move deeper in a pose, not to keep us out of it. Blocks can help you properly align your body so that you can begin to imprint what proper alignment feels like. In my case, they are helping me reach my full potential in jump-throughs and in power moves like lolasana. I like cork blocks because they are somewhat antibacterial and more environmentally friendly in comparison to foam blocks plus they are much lighter weight and easier to transport than wooden ones. to As for straps, I think I always used a strap for my home practice (especially in the beginning when I could barely touch my toes) but now I use a strap regularly for deep hip opening and psoas release after a long day and for keeping my shoulders and arms in alignment in balancing poses. More on the many uses of straps and blocks in another post!
3. Shandali Yoga Towel. OKAY, this may be a little personal and gross but I have clammy/sweaty hands all the time. It can be embarrassing but whatever, I am over it. With that said, having this type of problem can lead to serious slippage or injury if you are practicing on a regular old mat. Even if I am practicing for just a few minutes, I always put a yoga towel down. It helps to improve my grip and I like the softer texture on my hands and feet. I am currently obsessed with this light weight, fast drying and easy to transport version from Shandali.
4. La Vie Boheme Yoga Mat. I have had my La Vie Boheme mat for 2 years. It was an investment but I really love it. Yes, this is partially because of its sentimental value (I got it right after I finished my Yoga Teacher Training) but I also just love the feel of this mat - some expensive mats have this rough yet slippery texture and rubbery smell but this brand has none of that. It had just the right amount of cushion and support and I love that I can feel the grip beneath my feet. Not to mention, these mats are just plain beautiful and there is nothing else out there like them. I own the Warrior Mat, but the one above is a newer design called Zion that I am pining over.
5. We experience yoga through the senses of the body so it is important to set the proper mood with light, sound and smell to help you dive in deep especially with all the distractions at home. The smell of sandalwood always brings me right back to my teacher training, I really adore that scent.
6. I also like to be able to cleanse the space I practice in at home by wafting a little incense around or spraying Solavedi Organics rosewater mist on my face and body - it is incredibly refreshing and actually made in my hometown so it makes me feel closer to home.
6. A killer spotify playlist. Check my 2016 Yoga Mix here.
LIGHT & LOVE, LIVE CLEAN KITCHEN