Both yoga enthusiasts and teachers alike, understand the scope of which yoga has benefited their well-being. From increasing circulation, breathing, energy, focus, and core strength, to lowering the levels of stress, anxiety, depression, and pain. Yoga has become arguably one of the most addictive, and fascinating healthy lifestyles to adopt.
Around 5,000 years ago, yoga was first developed in India, as a comprehensive system for well-being on all levels: spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional. Although it was originally built on a system, and not beliefs, some say that yoga is Hindu, but "Hinduism" is a complicated, problematic term. Painted by outsiders for everything they saw going on in India, they believed yoga was stemmed with the Vedas. So just to be clear before we get started, doing yoga does not mean you're practicing a Hinduism ritual, regardless of what the hearsay may be.
Aside from the history of yoga, there are plenty of tools you can equip yourself, to help better your experience, and allow you to achieve success faster. Whether you’re an expert, or a beginner, this article should without a doubt, give you value.
If you'd need to first learn some yoga poses, download our new eBook "Yoga Power Poses", to access a library full of beneficial poses that will bring your yoga experience to the next level!
If you know some poses, and want to make sure you're rightfully equipped, then keep reading, as we're about to break down the 14 Yoga Products You'll be happy to Have!
1) Yoga block
Yoga blocks are used for balanced poses, with both arms and legs. They can assist you in holding a pose for longer periods of time, make your poses more comfortable, and even modify pre existing poses you're already confident in doing.
If you're not familiar with using yoga blocks, I suggest starting out with buying two blocks, and get the hang of executing poses such as the downward dog pose, using your hands to grip the blocks on the vertical height. Then try a warrior pose, keeping your feet balanced on the short height to start, then gradually improving your balance to accomplish the vertical height. After you've gotten to the point, where you're comfortable with your balance, and have strengthened your core muscles to where you feel confident in taking it a step further, then add a couple more blocks into your yoga session. Start attempting the triangle pose, or similar poses that use all fours. The possibilities end at your imagination, so play around with these, and enjoy exploring with them!
2) Comfortable Yoga Mat
I know you're probably chuckling at the obvious, and saying "well duh you need a yoga mat". But we're emphasizing on the word "comfortable", because there are plenty of cheap yoga mats on the market, that shouldn't even exist.
Using a yoga mat that is tear-resistant, has a good grip, durability, and padding, will benefit your yoga sessions a lot more. Using any cheap, thin, slippery yoga mat could make your poses more difficult and unproductive, making you feel less motivated. So remember, next time you see a “Good Deal” on a $5 yoga mat, it's probably because that yoga mat is as cheap as the price tag.
3) Yoga socks
You may own plenty pairs of socks, and perhaps you find them all very comfortable, but that’s not to say they’re the best choice in yoga wear. The difference in regular socks vs. yoga socks, is all in the design. Yoga socks have anti-slip soles, sewn with tiny rubber grips, so while you’re doing any kind of standing pose, you won’t have to worry about falling flat on your face... We all know how fun that is.
Some yoga socks are toe-fitted, also known as “Toe socks”. I suggest these over regular socks, since your toes have more flexibility, aiding balance as well as enhancing muscle training in your feet.
4) Yoga mat gym bag
What’s the difference between a yoga gym bag, and a regular gym bag? Well a yoga gym bag has a uniquely designed security strap, to lock your yoga mat into place, to improve damage protection, and help keep your bag organized.
Yoga gym bags also contain pockets for commonly used yoga products, such as yoga rollers, yoga blocks, and change of yoga pants. Regular gym bags do not have these features, so if you work out & do yoga, I’d suggest cutting to the chase, and just go with the yoga gym bag.
5) Yoga Training Belt
Now a yoga training belt isn’t your typical weightlifting belt, where you wrap a big leather thing around your waist with a big belt buckle, and start powerlifting heavy weights. A yoga training belt is a tool to increase your flexibility, and stretch out muscles in your legs.
Let’s say you’re attempting the dance pose, but your leg can’t quite reach high enough behind your back. So you try reaching your foot with your hand, hoping to pull it higher, but you just can’t reach.. Well that’s where these come in handy. A yoga training belt will help you get those poses down in baby steps, so you don’t have to cry in utter defeat and quit. These yoga training belts have several loops, so you can manage how much you're going to push yourself with each stretch. Although I know you want to see results fast, and are excited to take your flexibility to the next level, I highly urge you not to overstretch. Pulling a muscle will only destroy momentum, which will put you back on your progress.
6) Yoga wheel
Yoga wheels have become a much more trending item in the recent years, as who would have thought a giant ring would be so helpful in achieving yoga greatness?
What is the yoga wheel's purpose?
The yoga wheel helps assist you in advanced yoga poses, it opens up the front side of your body, and rolls out your spine. After a long day of working at a desk, holding beverages trays as a server, or being hunched over doing school work, you’ll learn that using a yoga wheel at the end of the day, is one of the most reinvigorating things you could do!
These wheels aren’t a cheap purchase, but they are 100% worth every penny. And if you take that leap of faith, you’ll understand why so many yoga enthusiasts go crazy over them!
What do you have to lose? A sore back and bade posture, that’s what you have to lose...
7) Resistance bands
You've probably seen resistance bands used for bodybuilding, as they're great for training the biceps, triceps, glutes, etc. And they're no doubt, the safest way to work out, as you’re not likely to pull a muscle while using them, and some argue that it's actually impossible to do so.
But how do you use resistance bands for yoga?
Take a moment to do a downward facing dog pose, and just think to yourself while executing that pose "what can give my muscles a better workout?"
Wrap a resistance band around your leg, and voila, it’s more intense (helping you develop that extra strength training).
There are numerous poses you can do while using these resistance bands, such as the bridge pose, arm pulse, and many others. So get yourself a set, and have some fun!
8) Yoga Swing
Yoga swings (also known as a yoga hammocks, or yoga trapezes) aren't the same swings you've played on at your preschool playground, but they are just as fun. Using a yoga swing allows you to do the yoga poses that aren’t possible to do while standing on ground level, which is why this is something you need to have. If you think you might not have the space right now for one, you should stay open minded at the idea of making room for one in the future, or even finding a tree branch in the yard to hang one from.
Yoga swings are fabric contraptions that allow you to hang in various ways, opening up the door to aerial acrobatics. Watch some YouTube videos, let us know what you think, and see if it’s something you’ll want to try… (Spoiler alert… you’ll want to try it).
9) Calm, Meditative Music
It’s inarguable that performing yoga is freeing for the mind, body, and soul. And there’s nothing more enhancing to the sense of sound, other than calm, meditative music. I’ve never had success doing poses, while listening to Slayer, Metallica, Parkway Drive, or any kind of metal. Certainly not motivated by depressing country twang either… And although I love all music, each genre has its purpose
Having a decent set of speakers, and a track that contains ambiances of relaxing sounds, collaborated together with the right frequencies of enriched textures, really helps put your mind at ease, relaxes your nerves, and also help release the tension to hold your poses for longer periods of time.
10) Oil Diffuser
Now aside from the sense of sound to benefit mental calmness, aromatherapy is an incredibly valuable tool, that can also enhance your yoga experience. Grabbing some essential oils, and letting one of these oil diffusers extract them into the air, will increase your mental wellbeing by lowering anxiety, stress, as well as enhancing your mood and mental sharpness.
Getting tired of using the same oil?
There are plenty of aromatherapy oils to choose from, such as lavender, tea tree, eucalyptus, chamomile, cedar wood, and the list goes on... My personal favorite is tea tree, but I suggest exploring the various essential oils on the market, and build your collection of favorites. Each oil has it's own unique benefit, so be sure to experiment with them well!
11) Yoga clothing
Not to point out another obvious yoga product, but yoga clothing is specifically designed to free your body from constriction, and allow you more flexibility to achieve the yoga poses. I can’t imagine doing a tree pose, while wearing Levi® denim jeans, with a button-up, long sleeve collared shirt.
You’ve heard of yoga pants (at least i’m assuming you have), and yes, they’re the perfect leg wear for executing your yoga session. Aside from the yoga pants, getting a good top is also essential for full-range movement. For the ladies, I suggest a tight-fitted tank top, made out of either lycra, cotton, or nylon. For the gentlemen, I suggest wearing a tight-fitted ¾ sleeve shirt, tucked in your men’s yoga pants.
*Please note, if you’re doing hot yoga, do NOT wear cotton, as this will retain your sweat, which will make you very uncomfortable.
12) Exercise Ball
Like the yoga ring we discussed earlier, the exercise ball is a great way to maneuver different poses. Exercise balls have been around for ages, and are clearly used for more than just yoga. These inflatable balls create a comfortable platform for you to execute bridges, dips, and other poses you may not be able to do yet. The exercise ball is also a great tool to improve balance, and core muscle stability, which only benefits your yoga pose stances.
13) Room-Temperature, glacier water
The last obvious thing we will point out in this article, is that hydration is vital for mental awareness, circulation, muscle regeneration, heart health, and overall well being. With that being said, it’s easy to not discipline yourself to drink it often enough, which can lead to you getting dizzy, and loose physical motivation.
Now we emphasize “Glacier” water, because it’s the most pure water you can get, free of metals, fluoride, and other substances you’ll receive from the common water drinking systems.
And why drink water at room temperature?
Drinking cold water reduces your body's core temperature, which also causes your blood vessels to constrict. When this happens, your body spends a lot of its energy bringing your core temperature back to normal. This wasted energy should be used to execute your yoga poses, so although Ice cold water may sound more appealing, it causes a big negative impact on your performance, so just keep that in mind next time you hydrate!
14) Foam roller
If you haven’t seen a foam roller before, you’re either living under a rock, or you’re not on social media. Regardless of your case, the yoga foam roller is one of the most beneficial tools you can get, and if you don't have one, I suggest you get one! These yoga foam rollers are used to relieve muscle tension, increase your muscle’s range of motion, correct muscular imbalance, and prevent injuries before they happen.
You’re not alone if you don’t know what to do with them, most people need to look up a Youtube video tutorial to find out. And that’s ok if you do, but let me make it simpler for you to understand. Think of your muscles as cookie dough, and you need that dough to get flattened out before baking. That is what you're doing to your muscles, kneading them from their tension, so they can repair faster.
You can roll out your thighs (front, back and sides), your feet, back (lower and upper), your butt, chest, arms, neck, and your face (just joking, don’t do that last one). So get one for yourself, and give it a try!
Now that we’ve given you a good list of materials, to either enhance your yoga experience, or get you started, we’re hopeful that your yoga practices can bring your wellbeing to the next level. So get pumped for your next yoga session, and don't forget to grab a sexy pair of leggings from LoveForLeggings.com!