One of the most wonderful things about yoga is that you can practice it no matter where you are in the world.
Whether you are on the rooftop of a hostel in Bolivia, the terrace of a guesthouse in Indonesia or the grassy backyard of a homestay in Australia, you can take a few moments to do your yoga practice and feel the positive mental and physical benefits.
So, if you plan on taking your yoga practice with you when you travel, here are some packing tips to keep in mind.
Portable Yoga Practice Gear
You’ll want to bring your yoga mat with you so that you have a soft and grippy surface on which to do your poses, but not just any yoga mat will do. A big and bulky one is fine for home, but when you are on the road, you want something lightweight and packable.
For example, Khataland has a YoFoMat which only weighs 2.7 lbs and can be folded or rolled to fit in your backpack. The Yogo Ultralight Travel Mat is also a great choice; it’s super thin and can be folded up very nicely.
Another solution is to not even bring a yoga mat with you at all and to use a product like Yoga Paws instead. They are grippy gloves and socks that you can wear—like mini yoga mats just for your hands and feet.
The advantage of this is that they will take up much less space than a mat in your luggage.
Yoga Clothes and Towels
Consider bringing a small microfiber travel towel which you can use to mop off your sweat, so that you aren’t slipping around on your mat. Mat wipes are quite handy too—they can be used to clean your mat after a yoga session as well as to freshen up your dirty bare feet.
Also, when it comes to yoga clothing, you’ll want to pack at least two pairs, so that you’ll still be able to practice when your other yoga clothes are in the wash. To save room in your luggage, consider practicing yoga in a simple tank top that you can also wear while out sightseeing.
Other Travel Essentials
So aside from those mentioned above, what other items should a traveling yogi make sure to bring?
- Don’t forget the hair ties or hairband so that you can keep your hair out of your face when you are practicing yoga.
- If you are practicing yoga or meditating outside in a cooler climate, you might want to bring along a cozy sweater or long-sleeved shirt to put on over your yoga clothing. (Avoid sweaters with a hood, it will flop down during inverted poses!)
- Bring along a journal and a pen. You can make notes on yoga postures, track your progress or just write about thoughts, creative ideas and feelings that emerge during your practice.
- A water bottle, as it is crucial to stay hydrated while you practice. (Check in advance whether not it is safe to drink water directly from the tap in the destination where you will be traveling.)
- Consider downloading a yoga app on your smartphone to follow along with. If you are used to a yoga teacher leading you, this can be a great substitute while you are on the road.
Last but not least, the most essential thing for a traveling yogi to bring along is patience and a positive attitude. When you are traveling, things might not always go smoothly and you can be forced out of your comfort zone.
Despite the hassles, setbacks, and inconveniences, it’s important to learn to smile, take a deep breath, and go with the flow.
Image credit: Sanaa Jaman