What to Wear To Yoga
What To Wear To Yoga
There are so many different styles of yoga, from Hatha yoga to Kundalini practices, and different styles of yoga will give different benefits. Choosing a practice that best suits requires trying different styles, but also really listening to what your body needs at any one time. For people who are more yang they will find themselves going to more sweaty classes, but they would probably also benefit from slowing down and doing classes that focus on the yin side.
It is also important to find teachers with whom you feel comfortable and that have a teaching style that you connect with. So many people conclude that they do not like yoga when really what they did not like was the style of yoga or the teacher. There are so many styles, so if one does not work, try another. There are so many benefits to adding a yoga practice to your life, including the persist desire to evolve because yoga is more than the physical practice, it really requires us to awaken.
One of the ways to be present in your practice is to be comfortable with what you are wearing. On the mat as well as in the wardrobe department, yoga is all about doing what feels right for you – so dress in what feels good for you and makes you feel like a inspired. Because it is not just about leggings, it is about a commitment to yourself and the habits that you want to bring into your life. A home practice is easier to do once you are dressed in your yoga wear.
Here are some popular styles of yoga and what you might want to wear to them.
Hatha is a general term that refers to any type of yoga that teaches physical postures. It is an old system that includes the practice of asanas (yoga postures) and pranayama (breathing exercises). A Hatha class will be relatively gentle and poses will be held longer. This style of yoga is great for beginners or students who prefer a more relaxed style. The slow asanas and breathing work bring peace to the mind and body. For this yoga class, wear what you feel most comfortable in such as cotton yoga pants and tank tops in which you can move freely and allows prana to move.
Anusara means “flowing with grace,” “going with the flow,” “following your heart.” It was developed by John Friend and focuses on using alignment principles which give guidelines on how to align the body. You can expect a flow practice with some key poses held for a longer time. The aim is to use the physical practice of yoga to help students open their hearts and experience grace. Wear an outfit that allows you to open to grace without any wardrobe adjustments such as an all in one body suit .
Vinyasa/ Power/ Flow
Vinyasa Yoga is a dynamic style of yoga that is physical and can be a great source of cardio. The word vinyasa comes from the Sanskrit term nyasa, meaning ‘to place’ and the prefix vi, meaning ‘in a special way’, or more loosely translated to “breath- synchronized movement”. In this style of yoga the body moves in sync with the breath creating flowing movements. Baptiste Yoga, Jivamukti, Power Yoga and Prana Flow could all be considered vinyasa yoga. Vinyasa also describes the specific sequence of poses that moves from Chaturanga to Upward-Facing Dog to Downward-Facing Dog. Prepare for lots of movement in leggings that allow you to move freely and with ease.
Ashtanga Yoga is a highly structured vinyasa style class based on ancient yoga teachings. It was popularised and brought to the West by K. Pattabhi Jois. Just as in vinyasa this style of yoga involves synchronising the breath with a progressive series of postures. But in Ashtanga the same exact poses are always performed in the same order. There are 5 asana series and students must master ever pose of the first series before moving to the second series.
This is a physically demanding practice and you are likely to sweat, make sure to bring a towel and wear eco friendly 4 way stretch leggings and yoga bras that are close to the body and don't bunch up.
Bikram Yoga/ Hot Yoga
Bikram Yoga is usually practiced in studios heated to 40 degrees with forced air heating and 40% humidity. The same 26 poses and breathing techniques are taught in 90 minute classes. Familiarity with the routine can promote a more present and focused practice.
In Hot Yoga the rooms are heated to body temperature using hydronic radiant heating with 50% humidity. The 60 minute classes are often performed to music and can either be a slow flow or a power flow following the Ashtanga Vinyasa lineage that encompasses strong poses, fast pace and jumping transitions.
In both these styles of yoga you can expect to sweat a lot, wear sweat wicking shorts and yoga bra and bring a towel to soak up the sweat. Steer clear of cotton baggy t-shirts. Remember to bring your water bottle with you.
Yin Yoga was initially called Daoist Yoga and was brought to us by Paul Grilley. Yin yoga is increasingly in popularity because of its benefits in our fast paced world. It is a more meditative approach that targets the deep connective tissues and fascia of the body. Yin Yoga Postures are more passive and are held for three, five or even 20 minutes. It requires more intimacy with the self, more than yang yoga practices.
A restorative yoga class typically involves only a few yoga poses supported by props that allow you to completely relax, rest and restore the body. Most are based on the teaching of B.K.S. Iyengar. This can be really beneficial in times of stress, emotional healing and during menstruation.
A yoga blanket can be a wonderful prop to have at home as it is so versatile, it can be used as a cushion or a bolster in your restorative practice at home.
Kundalini is an ancient yogic practice that focuses on the breath, asana (a.k.a physical postures) along with sound and meditation. The ultimate goal of Kundalini is to increase your self-awareness and unblocking your chakras. Free flowing yoga pants in light colours suit this practice.