By Alejandra Leyva for for Yoga Medicine®.
Yoga has positively impacted many people around the world. In the U.S. alone, there are approximately 36 million yoga practitioners. Globally, over 200 million people are practicing this.
Yoga involves performing different poses and applying meditation principles. It includes various stretching and breathing techniques. However, it’s more than just a physical-and-mental exercise.
For true yogis and yoginis, yoga is a spiritual path to enlightenment. That’s why they always make time for this, no matter where they are and what they do.
But what if you’re traveling? How can you ensure you don’t neglect your yoga practice? Fret not, as we’ve rounded up some yoga advice for you. Here’s how to stretch it all out when traveling:
5 Practical Yoga Tips for Traveling
Tim White, the founder of Milepro, believes that traveling is good for health and well-being. “Its benefits are rewarding. Not only does it make you physically active, but it also fosters mental wellness.”
But sitting on a plane for hours or getting locked up in a hotel for days can make you physically inactive and mentally preoccupied. That’s where yoga comes in.
If you’re looking to continue your yoga practice during travel, here are top tips for you:
1. Include yoga in your travel plans.
Proper planning is key to a successful trip. You should book a flight, set your budget, create your itinerary, and pack things up.
However, it’s a different story if you’re traveling with a health condition like diabetes. The same is true if you travel with your kids and pets.
But what if you’re looking to travel with yoga in mind? Include such in your travel plans.
What to bring and wear:
- Bring your yoga mat.
- Wear loose and comfortable clothing.
- Bring pillows or inflatable rings.
What to eat and drink:
- Drink plenty of water.
- Be picky about what to eat.
- Pack healthy foods.
What to do when on a trip:
- Don’t cross your legs.
- Recline whenever possible.
- Harness the benefits of stretching.
2. List simple yoga poses for traveling.
Yoga practitioners are familiar with various poses and breathing techniques. You can easily and quickly these execute at home or in a yoga studio. However, you won’t be able to do so when traveling.
Hence, list a couple of poses you can try during your trip. Here are a few recommendations:
- Fire Log Pose: This pose is ideal for hip flexibility. Slide your left foot under the right leg, and stack your right leg up on the left. Sit on the edge of the seat and put your hands on your knees.
- Child’s Pose: This pose can stretch your body to reduce stress and fatigue. Spread your knees and hinge forward from your hips. Your torso folds over the thighs, and your forehead rests on the legs, with your arms extended.
- Easy Pose: This pose involves deep breathing to relieve stress and anxiety. Cross your shins, widen your knees, and slip each foot beneath the opposite knee. Stack your hands in your lap with your palms up.
- Cat-cow Pose: This pose is best for the flexibility of your spine. All it takes is to align your feet with your hips on your seat. Roll your shoulders to arch your chest up and out with your hands on top of your thighs.
- Neck and Shoulder Rolls: These poses help relieve tension in your neck and shoulders. For neck rolls, imagine a clock and slowly circle your nose around it. For shoulder rolls, draw circles with your shoulders in one direction and the other.
3. Designate yoga time and never make excuses.
As mentioned, come up with a travel itinerary. It won’t hurt to include some yoga time in your schedule. However, your sessions don’t have to be extensive and time-consuming.
Some yoga poses for a few minutes will work. For example, perform neck and shoulder rolls when sitting on a plane. You can also do a fire-log or child pose as soon as you get in your hotel room.
Kyle Risley, the founder and CEO of Lift Vault, incorporates yoga in workout programs. “As some of our clients are frequent travelers, we always recommend they do some stretching. The goal is to live a healthy lifestyle, no matter where they are and what they do,” Risley said.
4. Join local yoga classes in your travel destination.
If you don’t want to miss out on your yoga sessions, there’s one viable solution. Attend yoga classes in the locality!
Fret not, as there are plenty of options to select.
For one, there are most likely yoga studios in your travel destination. Hotels are also offering their guests fitness classes, including yoga. Lastly, you can look for a perfect place, set up your space, and join online yoga classes.
5. Consider a yoga retreat for your travel.
The last on the list is like hitting two birds with one stone. A yoga retreat is perfect for all yoga enthusiasts. Not only will you have a travel adventure, but you’ll also have your yoga sessions.
Whether you’re a yoga instructor or student, organize a yoga retreat. First, look for a place ideal for yoga. Choose a venue that will allow you to meditate and commune with nature.
Also, invite your colleagues to build a community of yogis and yoginis. Ultimately, the goal is to promote yoga as a holistic approach to well-being.
Stretching It All Out
Practicing yoga comes with several good reasons, from relieving stress to losing weight to feeling happy. As such, you don’t want to give it up when traveling.
Consider the five yoga tips recommended for traveling. With these in mind, you won’t miss out on your practice.
Whether sitting on a plane or checking into a hotel, you’ll be able to stretch it all out!