What Things do I need for Yoga?

This post is not going to make me very popular in the Yoga World….

Because it’s really very simple. You don’t need anything.

Seriously, nothing.

At all.

You (and many others!) might be thinking, “BUT- What about a mat? What about blocks? A strap? a super soft bolster?????? Yoga Pants???? ” and its all completely legitimate! I have 4 mats hanging on the wall in the room where I practice. I also have ALL THE THINGS that I have collected over a lifetime of study. Do those things help sometimes? Sure! Do I Love practicing in my Lululemon 25 inch high waisted Align leggings? Absolutely! But all of that stuff is 100% unnecessary.

What drew me into a deep study of yoga was simply that it didn’t require anything. My body and enough space on the floor for my body. That was all I needed. At the time I was just starting college, and I had a lot of healing to do in my mind and body. So I just started. I didn’t own a mat. I borrowed one from my teacher until I made enough waiting tables to pay for anything outside of school and living expenses. Eventually, I bought a mat that my teacher rolled off of the wall like paper at a butcher shop and cut for my height. That thing lasted 20 years before I finally retired it.

Sound bowls with Tibetan chime, mala, sage in abalone shell, and meditation pillow on my yoga rug.

Y’all, I am a terrible consumer. I like stuff. When I want to buy something I will seek out the details and figure out what best suits my needs. Even then, I can always talk myself out of almost any purchase (unless its 4am and the baby is not sleeping well – for some reason, I am VERY decisive with a tiny human pinning me into a rocking chair with my phone as my only lifeline….). My point is, I have tried it all. Nothing ever improved my practice! Except for ….. *wait for it*…… **it’s amazing**….. Practicing! (Is your mind blown? I didn’t think so…)

Often, we say we WANT to learn yoga, and then deep in our psyche, we don’t actually want to do the work. We don’t want to feel how stiff we have allowed our bodies to become or face the body that no longer bends the way it once did. SO – we make excuses…. most of the time, my excuses start with my stuff. “if only I had ______ then I could practice more.” or “When I can get _____ then I’ll Really get better at ______”. My teacher sees beyond my physical ability and is very gracious to encourage me. She often smiles at me and simply says “just play around with it”. I do, she has not been wrong yet. My mind limits my ability, and my excuses keep me comfortable. When I try a little harder, what I am afraid of gets smaller. And I get stronger.

I have practiced yoga for 26 years… Not always in a dedicated way, but usually in some way. Of Course, I have collected things. So what are the things that I appreciate in my practice? Great question. The list is small but mighty:

~ I LOVE my Florensi meditation pillow and mat… Mostly because they’re super comfortable and they’re headquartered in Austin TX.

~ Eventually, you will want your own mat. Definitely get one that is manufacturer guaranteed. For that reason, most yogis have a Manduka mat or 2 in their pile.

~As far as yoga clothes go, whatever you are comfortable in works every time! T-shirt and shorts? Fine. Stretchy pants and a tank top? great! I own about 4 pairs of these because they’re very comfortable, $16, and pockets!

The only things I don’t like to practice in is anything with hard buckles or something you have to tie knots in to keep in place. I have several tops with “cute” knots in them and I never wear them. One sports bra with oversized loops for strap adjusting and it pinches me every time I roll over my shoulders. Yoga Journal has not recognized naked yoga as an actual “type” yet, but I bet it’s coming soon…. So, ya know, dont over invest….

All of the links in this post does provide a small commission to me, which will not affect the price to you. I will not ever put anything up that I don’t use myself or recommend. I will soon have a page on this website with amazon links to all of the books I refer to constantly. I truly love sharing this stuff. In the Apostle Pauls letter to the Christians in Phillippi, he emphasizes that they live as healthy citizens. In wellness, he discusses behaviors of love. The common quote from this scripture is to “do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves”. I believe that this is not an opportunity for me to “sell” you something, but a chance for me to teach you that fewer high quality things can benefit your wellness. You rely less on props or pushing yourself too far beyond your current level of strength or mobility. And I believe that clutter in your space is directly related to clutter in your mind. I offer these few things from a place of love, because I want you to be well. If you would like to read more about me or Kindred Yoga, follow the link or send me a note!

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