11 Must Have Yoga Accessories
Diving into the world of yoga can be a little perplexing in the beginning, as it's a big challenge in itself to know what yoga gear you must need to invest in. The yoga industry has been flooded with so much equipment that it may feel like you have to spend extravagantly on every accessory before starting yoga.
Contrary to this, in reality, all you need to commence your yoga journey is appropriate yoga equipment that can help you reach your goals effortlessly.
As a beginner, your emphasis must be on improving your balance and then on investing on the appropriate yoga equipment. Once you get the hype, it gets imperative to put some money into top-quality yoga accessories, as they say quality always prevails.
The popularity of yoga in the USA has risen constantly since the early 2000s. In 2008, there were about 17 million people doing yoga in the U.S. By spring of 2016, about 28 million people stated practicing yoga or pilates. In total, there were nearly 37 million yoga participants in the country in 2015. This figure was forecasted to rise to 55 million by 2020.
Source: Statista Report
To save you the hassle of choosing between yoga accessories, we have come up with a list of must-haves that we believe is worth spending your hard-earned money on.
1) Yoga Mat
As soon as you start thinking about turning into a yogi, the first thing that pops up in your mind is a yoga mat. Since it is an obvious yoga accessory, you can't imagine starting your yoga journey without owning one in good quality. It's like your sacred space, where nobody else can set their feet on.
Before buying, make sure that your yoga mat is a non-slippery one and has a solid grip, because you definitely don't want to lose balance while practicing some of those complicated yoga postures.
Remember, you are buying a yoga mat because you want to avoid possible injury, not to get one. The surface of the mat and texture must be considered for hassle-free yoga sessions, so that you can have improved balance and comfort, avoiding direct contact with the floor.
You’ll probably want to use a yoga mat to keep you from sliding around in standing poses, and to cushion you while in seated and lying positions.
Source: Yoga- How it works
Make sure that you buy a high-quality yoga mat even if you have to spend a few bucks extra. A cheap mat will cost you even more down the road because it will quickly wear out due to the thin and low-quality material.
If you are looking for a high-quality mat, choose Xn8 sports yoga mat, and get started with your favorite asana and mudra, anywhere you want.
2) Yoga Towel
Hot yoga sessions can leave the temperature soaring and with that, your yoga mat can get super uncomfortable due to the sweat, making it difficult for you to stay put. To help you overcome this dilemma, nothing might serve better than a yoga towel. It can help you with:
- improving your grip over a yoga mat
- absorbing sweat effectively
Is that all that yoga towel can help you with? Of course not, it can be useful in a number of different ways. For instance, with its ample cushioning, it protects you from a possible injury, also securing the mat, ensuring that it won't budge. Above all, you surely don't want to catch the bacteria from the used studio mat, so rule out this possibility with a yoga towel and muster all the goodness from Bikram.
Are you among those who believe they can use a regular towel instead of a yoga towel? Perhaps you think that your bathroom towel is handy, so why to take the pain of buying a yoga towel. But you need to consider the fact that a regular towel won’t provide the desired grip or stop the mat from sliding.
3) Yoga Hand Towel
You may not have given this particular yoga accessory much thought, but it could make your prolonged and taxing yoga sessions much more convenient. Yoga is all about balance and focus, and it's certainly not easy to stay focused when your hands are slippery and sweat is snuggling in your eyes.
Yoga hand towel, sometimes mentioned as 'sports sized towel', is cab be an ideal accessory for newbie yogis who can ease their yoga journey by getting their hands on mat/towel combo. Now, all they need is a hand towel to wipe away sweat from their face and hands during a hot yoga session.
However, you don't need to confuse the word 'towel' here. A bathroom or kitchen towel can work just fine, but who wants to wash them constantly when you can have a stock of yoga towels right in your closet.
4) Yoga Bag
You have just delved into the realm of meditation and after splurging on your favorite yoga gears, now skipping a yoga class seems like a betrayal. But that doesn't mean you have to miss other plans arranged by your friends. A yoga bag comes in handy when you have to deal with the intimidating task of transporting a yoga mat from your workspace to your friend's place or to accompany you on a hike.
The yoga mat bag is an ideal yoga accessory that relieves you from the worry of carrying a yoga mat, and also sometimes includes additional space for your other essentials like towels or extra pair of clothes.
So, instead of clutching your yoga mat under your arm, it's time to buy yourself a yoga bag to get the job done. Just roll your mat, put it in the bag, strap it on your shoulder and you are good to go.
5) Yoga Blocks
Have you ever thought about investing in yoga props that can ace your yoga game? Maybe it's time to consider the possibility. Irrespective of what yoga styles you are practicing, you can use a prop like yoga block to improve balance and asana alignment together with increased relaxation.
For a beginner, yoga blocks can be highly effective for building strength, understanding alignment, and getting deeper into the yoga postures. These are great for any level of your practice and one of their advantages is that you can use them to get to the advanced levels of yoga.
Yoga is all about steadying your mind and body, and that's why it's important to breathe freely, maintaining a posture with a sense of ease. That's where yoga blocks help you the most. They can make a difference in any yoga posture like a Side Angle, where using a block can inculcate ease and convenience rather than uncertainty and danger.
6) Yoga Strap
A yoga strap is a must-have yoga equipment, which can accompany you anywhere you go. So, make sure you don’t forget putting it in your list. If you are a total beginner, it can be your best friend by helping you achieve flexibility and strength, opening your body to deep relaxation while practicing asanas. It definitely has multiple uses and the obvious one includes facilitating yogis to practice stretching, increase mobility and reduce stiffness. Let's quickly look at some other benefits of yoga straps that you can reap.
You can perform a variety of motions with a yoga strap: If you are looking to incorporate a variety of motions in your yoga practice, a yoga strap can help you extend your body in postures like Standing Forward Fold and more. For a newbie, grabbing your feet can be a bit too far. In that case, you can clasp the yoga strap behind your feet, with the help of which you can fully extend your arm and further pull yourself in the forward bend.
Its simple shape and length make it easy to adapt to your yoga needs: A yoga strap is easily adaptable due to its simple design. Some of the straps come with a D-ring fitted at one end, which makes them perfectly circular. For instance, if you have eased into a stretch position, tying a yoga strap around your body helps you retain the pose for a longer time.
A yoga strap is incredibly great to increase your muscle strength: Apart from building resistance and improving balance, a strap is a great way to increase your muscle strength. You can build up your arm muscles by pulling the yoga strap in opposite directions and clenching it for a few seconds. Developing your body strength in this way will help you succeed in other stimulating yoga poses you have been putting off lately.
7) Yoga Bolster
Performing complex yoga poses can get tricky and to perform them comfortably, it is important to incorporate some of the most efficient yoga equipment like a yoga bolster. Just like a yoga strap, a bolster is a yoga prop that looks like a pillow and is used by yogis to provide their body the support it needs.
It helps you achieve some of the toughest yoga poses without making you bear strenuous pain, so there are fewer prospects of injury and an elevated level of enjoyment and benefits.
Why you should buy a yoga bolster immediately? Because not only do you want to get pro in practicing challenging postures on your yoga mat, but at the same time you want to let go of the stress.
When you perform restorative yoga while using a yoga bolster, it stimulates the nervous system and increases blood circulation, and thus boots you out of stress. For its stress-relieving characteristics, it is being used extensively in many restorative yoga practices.
8) Yoga Blanket
When you get tired of yoga blocks and bolsters, switch to the yoga blanket. It is a gentle source of warmth and makes Savasna heavenly by providing warmth and relaxation to your joints. Yoga blanket comes in different fabrics like cotton and wool, giving you excellent support while performing certain yoga asanas where your body must be above the ground.
Choose a blanket that is a mix of good quality fabric and also offers you the right support. Some yoga postures can get intense and may lead to sweating, which you can wipe away with a yoga blanket.
It can be placed beneath your knees and shoulders or above your waist and hips to get maximum support by providing mild weight to the targeted areas when you perform Bridge pose or Reclined Bound Angle pose. Plus, if your yoga mat is thin and light, a yoga blanket can provide the perfect cushion to your knees and thus it can be a great modification for a plank pose.
9) Yoga Mat Cleaner
You wash your clothes to get them neat, tidy, and free of unpleasant sweat, smell and bacteria, so that you can wear them confidently. Just like that, a yoga mat is an essential yoga equipment that you use on a daily basis to practice yoga, therefore, requiring frequent washing and cleaning. Moreover, your yoga mat can catch all kinds of germs, dust, and sweat after daily yoga session which makes its cleaning essential.
Luckily, cleaning a yoga mat is not hard at all because a good quality cleaner can help you do it effortlessly. While choosing a cleaner, look for something that has natural ingredients in it, does not leave the residue behind, and disinfects properly.
You can get maximum benefits from your yoga practice as long as you are keeping the sanitary requirements in check because direct contact with a dirty mat can cause fungus and breathing issues. If you are interested to know more about how to care for your yoga mat in a rather DIY way, please read the article How to Clean and Care for a Yoga Mat
10) Yoga Apparel
Before starting yoga, it is extremely important that you must consider both, the environment and the clothes. You might not have taken it seriously but any insignificant disturbance in these two things can greatly affect your meditation and yoga workout session.
Research has shown that what you wear affects your overall physical health. They refer to this phenomenon as "enclothed cognition". Not only is wearing bad, tight, and uncomfortable clothes going to make you feel bad, they are also going to affect your health.
Choosing the right size of yoga apparel definitely helps to elevate your mood and confidence, making you also feel more at ease during yoga sessions. This added goodness will help you retain the focus and the session itself becomes more productive.
Contrary to this, wearing uncomfortable and ill-fitted clothes in the yoga class can leave you crampy and you won't be able to stretch properly. Therefore, yoga pants are designed with a stretchable and breathable material, so you can perform a variety of movements with no limitations.
You can do different yoga exercises in your casual clothes but owning a pair of yoga pants and tank will not only help you in maintaining the right posture, but also offers a cushioning effect that you deserve. You can easily pack your yoga apparel and keep them handy in case you are off on a vacay with your buddies. So, whenever you get some time, have a quick change of clothes, roll your yoga mat and embrace the goodness it offers.
11) Yoga Foam Roller
A yoga foam roller is the next big thing on the list. It is an incredible piece of yoga equipment that offers you benefits like muscle relaxation by reducing tension and swelling, improving blood circulation and flexibility ultimately.
A yoga roller is a must-have accessory due to its amazing benefits and once you start using it on regular basis, you'll notice that the body pains and aches start fading and there will be a tremendous increase in your range of motion. Adding foam roller to your pre and post-workout routine will leave your body less sore in the days to follow.
After an intense bout of exercise, foam rolling is thought to alleviate muscle fatigue and soreness (i.e., delayed-onset muscle soreness [DOMS]) and improve muscular performance. Potentially, foam rolling may be an effective therapeutic modality to reduce DOMS while enhancing the recovery of muscular performance.
Source: Journal of Athletic Training
Yoga is most certainly a highly therapeutic ancient practice that has gained immense popularity in our modern world. Its immense benefits for both mental and physical health have been discussed widely by health gurus and physical trainers all over the world. As the market for fitness equipment has started growing in the past few decades, the yoga industry, too, introduced several accessories to help yogis with their daily practice. From the yoga mat to other yoga props, these accessories are making it possible for people to practice a wide range of yoga postures that were lately aimed only by seasoned yogis.