Using props is an efficient and fun way to advance your yoga practice.
Most yoga studios have props available for you to borrow while in class. Having a few props on hand is also key to growing a home practice. The versatility of props is amazing and they are great for improving flexibility, balance, and asanas.
Straps and blocks, for example, lend those few extra inches you need to touch your toes. When you use a strap, it acts as an extension of your limbs. Instead of straining to reach, you can relax, and allow your entire body to do the same. The feeling of support that you get when leaning into a bolster allows you to completely let go. Props are the secret fuel to ignite your yoga practice.
You can find more information about any of the props listed below by clicking the photo of the item (product links).
In a nutshell, yoga blocks bring the floor closer to you. Blocks allow you to dive deeper into poses and establish proper alignment.
2. Yoga Strap
Yoga straps are the secret sauce to finagling yourself into otherwise uncomfortable positions. Being able to relax the rest of your body improves flexibility in the area you are focusing in. Straps are also great for assisting with body alignment. For example, by placing a looped strap around your triceps, you put yourself in a better position to learn inversions.
3. Yoga Bolster
The main purpose of the yoga bolster is to offer support. It is a common prop used in restorative practices. Bolsters provide comfort in many relaxing positions including chest openers and meditation. I love putting a bolster under my knees during savasana.
4. Yoga Towel
The yoga towel is made to be slip-resistant. Specially formulated to absorb sweat and provide traction, yoga towels are your first line of defense from slipping into faceplant pose.
5. Eye Pillow
Eye pillows dramatically increase your ability to relax at the end of class. Infused with essential oils, they are healing and relaxing. The weight of the flax seed filler makes it easier to close your eyes and drift away.
6. Yoga Blanket
Also common in restorative yoga practice, blankets work in a similar way to bolsters. They are easier to travel with and can also be used add warmth during meditation or savasana.
7. Yoga Sandbag
Most sandbags do not come filled, but they generally hold around 10 lbs. of sand. The weight from this prop allows you to feel completely grounded and relaxed.
By providing a counterbalance, the yoga wheel makes backbends and inversions more accessible. The instability factor is great for increasing core strength, as well.
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