Practicing yoga needs comfortable clothing so that you are able to perform the various yoga poses in a relaxed manner. Wearing proper yoga clothes helps you give your best in the most comfortable manner. Yoga clothes should be such that they may allow free movement in all yoga poses. Another important requirement of yoga clothes is that they should be able to absorb sweat. Such clothes will help to keep you dry, cool and comfortable.
Proper size is another important point to be kept in mind while shopping for yoga clothes. If the clothes that you buy for yoga are not the right size then they may either be too lose to interrupt in your yoga practice or too tight for you to wear and practice yoga poses.
Let’s take a look at the various clothes that are just apt for you to practice yoga in:
Yoga pants are useful not only for practicing yoga but they can also be used for Pilates, martial arts, dance, movement or exercise. Yoga Capri pants are better choice for yoga because they have very comfortable, loose-cropped legs. Yoga pants are available in different materials such as cotton, fleece, Lycra, CoolMax and Tactel. You can opt for the fabric that suits you the most and get geared up to perform the various yoga poses.
Like all other yoga clothes, yoga shirts should be lightweight and comfortable to wear. Yoga shirts are made of different materials including cotton, fleece, Lycra and are available in different colors. They are meant to allow easy hand movements while not interrupting with your postures. Women could also opt for comfortable camis that are just the right piece of clothing to practice yoga in summers, especially!
Men could opt for cotton or Lycra tees that are known to be the best for performing yoga poses. They are comfortable and look trendy. They could also go for hoodies and zippers as per their comfort level and choice.
Unitard provides coverage, support and comfort while performing yoga. It is usually made of durable, lightweight organic cotton or spandex with double-layered front and back panels and single-layer arms and legs. It is available in different colors and sizes. It is just the apt yoga clothing as it has no lose ends and is still very comfortable. Most of the players who perform gymnastics also wear unitards.
Breathing exercises, meditation techniques, as well as stretching exercises; all require the practitioner to feel comfortable. That is why choosing proper yoga clothes is very important. They not only help you practice yoga but give you the feel of being completely equipped for the task.
The spirit is within us – not something that can be acquired from outside. It is inside you – it is you. One method of reaching to the self within is ‘breath’. Breath is the bridge between the spirit and the body. Yoga teaches how to control the flow of breath by linking it with physical exercises and postures.
The practice of yoga helps us reach closer to the spirit. The final destination is the experience of this blissful radiance that is actually not just inside us but all around us. Self realization is nothing but dissolving our body-mind into the spirit.
In the process, yoga helps us become more aware and mindful of our body and surroundings. It tunes us to the needs of our body and mind. It makes us aware of what needs to be done or understood. The journey makes us feel confident of ourselves and believe in our innate abilities. It brings vitality in life and a refreshing change in attitude towards life.
Yoga benefits several planes of life – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. It gives not just physical strength but also mental toughness and emotional stability. Yoga accelerates evolution of consciousness; it is not merely a personal fitness plan.
Meditative postures in yoga help free our thoughts. Several styles of yoga focus on this plane. Thoughts just come and go, and yoga teaches how to detach from them while not avoiding them. Anxiety and depression can easily be reduced and even eliminated. Anxiety and depression are just “thoughts”; yoga brings us to this realization. You have to go through the process to understand this. You can then have better control over emotions and be clear in your thinking process. Improved concentration is one of the first benefits that yoga imparts.
Yoga also deeply relaxes the body and improves physical wellbeing. A great deal of stamina, strength and flexibility can be achieved by doing yoga. This in turn helps us focus on the spiritual level of life – a healthy body makes for a healthy mind, and a healthy mind makes for spiritual uplift. Some styles of yoga focus primarily on physical fitness and can be used as stepping stones to further progress.
Control over breath vitalizes the body and helps sustain the benefits of yoga for longer periods of time. The breathing becomes smoother and deeper. Many people have the habit of holding breath especially during moments of stress. Yoga clears out the air channels and makes breathing easy, which has a calming effect on the mind.
Yoga is not religious – it is spiritual. Although founded by Hindus, the spirit belongs to no religion. The spirit is one.
Sun salutation or surya namaskar is the starting point of any yoga session. It incorporates a series of asanas that prepare you for a comprehensive yoga session. Here is a step by step guide to sun salutation.
Stand straight with both your legs joined. Join your hands and place them near your chest. Your body should be relaxed. Now take a deep breath.
Exhale. As you exhale, bend downwards in the waist while trying to touch your toes with your fingers. While you bend down, make sure that your knees are straight. Also, make sure that your neck is not tensed.
Now inhale while you stretch your left leg backwards. Make sure that your left knee touches the floor. The right leg would be folded and the right knee would press against your chest. Both the arms would be straight, with your palms pressing against the floor. Stretch your chest forward while raising your neck upwards. Try to push your shoulders back.
Hold your breath and take your right leg backwards. Now, both your legs should be parallel to each other. Straighten both your legs with your toes touching the floor. Your knees should be above from the ground. Keep your arms straight, your palms pressed against the floor. Stretch your chest and keep your neck straight.
As you exhale, bring your forehead towards the floor. Bring your knees to the floor. Fold your arms in the elbows and draw your elbows closer to your chest. Your toes, knees, chest, palms and forehead should touch the floor. Your thighs, hips, waist or abdomen should not touch the floor.
Straighten your arms as you inhale with your palms pressing against the floor and your fingers pointing forward. You need to lift your upper body while your lower legs should rest on the floor. The body portion above the knees should be above the ground. Press your waist downwards while pushing your neck upwards. Make sure that your arms are straight.
Here only your palms and feet should be touching the floor. The rest of your body needs to be above the ground. Hold your breath and bend your neck downwards. Keep your feet and hands firm, while raising the rest of the body upwards. Make sure that you keep your knees straight. Your body resembles an inverted V in this position.
Now bring your right leg forward. Fold your right leg and press it against your chest with your hands by your side. This is going to be the same as step 3, the only difference being that in step 3 your left leg was forward.
Exhale and bring your left leg forward as you try to touch your toes with your feet. This is the same as step 2.
Get up slowly and return to step 1.
Follow all these steps and find yourself practicing sun salutation perfectly.
There is no need for you to dress for your yoga class in casual tees and track pants. With a wide range of options available for yoga clothing for women, you can dress to your yoga class in whichever way you want- spunk, casual, or feminine. Here are some of the most popular choices for yoga clothing for women.
Most yoga asanas require ample stretching. So, you obviously cannot wear your jeans to your yoga class. This is where yoga pants come to play. They are stretchable and offer you ample flexibility when you practice yoga asanas. They are available in full length, cropped and knee length versions. So, you can easily make your pick.
In case, you do not prefer full length pants while practicing yoga, yoga shorts are a great option for you. Unlike yoga pants, yoga shorts offer free movement of the knees and lower legs. This makes yoga shorts apt for those who practice advanced yoga.
Yoga tank tops
Yoga tank tops are the hottest pick in yoga clothing for women. No matter what is your size, you can surely fit into one of these yoga tank tops. You can choose from a wide range of styles- criss-cross, racer back, halter neck and the like. Yoga tank tops are available in a wide range of color options- purple, green, yellow, orange, red…you name it and you have it.
Yoga scrunched cardigans
Practicing yoga in a tank top can be a little uncomfortable during the winter season. This is where these scrunched cardigans come into play. They keep you warm as you practice yoga. Also, they are scrunched at the bottom so you do not have to worry about your cardigan rolling up in some yoga postures.
If you are not very comfortable with yoga pants or shorts, then yoga leggings are a great option for you. They offer amazing flexibility and are easy to use. You can wear them with a t-shirt or a tank top. However, if you are on the heavier side, these yoga leggings may not be the best choice.
These are the best option if you would like to keep it very simple and casual for the yoga class. The best part about yoga T-shirts is that you can wear them not just to your yoga class but for casual wear as well. Yoga T-shirts imprinted with spiritual symbols are a hot pick. You can choose amongst the full sleeves, half sleeves or sleeveless yoga T-shirts.
Some women are not very comfortable practicing yoga in tank tops and yoga pants. Yoga leotard is the perfect option for such females. It keeps your arms and legs free and allows easily movement. It is more suitable for practicing advanced yoga forms.
Go ahead and choose your favorite yoga clothes and dress the way you want to.
About the pose/asana
Staff pose is the elementary seating position. The pose forms the basis of almost all other types of yoga poses that involve sitting on the floor. The pose can be difficult if one intends to thoroughly workout one’s thighs.
Benefits of pose/asana
The benefits of Staff pose are mainly related to improvement in posture. They include the following:
* One is able to stretch one’s chest and shoulders.
* It helps in improvement of alignment.
* It helps in the strengthening of back muscles.
* It helps in therapeutic treatment of sciatica.
* It helps in the strengthening of legs.
How to do Staff Pose or Dandasana?
Step 1: Sit on the floor with your legs stretched straight in front of you. Keep your torso in as straight and erect a manner as possible. Your spine should be in a slightly arched shape.
Step 2: While keeping your stomach in a relaxed position, flex your thigh muscles. Use them to lift the heels of your feet off the floor.
Step 3: While remaining in the position, try to elongate your spine. Feel energy moving from your lower back, up your shoulder and back again towards your lower back.
Step 4: Position your shoulders vertically on top of your hips. Keep your spine in an erect manner, just like a staff rooted vertically in to the ground.
Step 5: Try to remain in the position for as long as possible. The minimum time should be at least a minute.
Words of Caution
The pose is not meant to be performed when you are suffering from a lower back or wrist injury. If you are a beginner then you can slip easily into the pose by placing sand bags on your thighs. However, do not put weight beyond 10 lbs.
You can use a blanket as a prop in order to further increase your chances of doing it successfully. You can also use a wall for help, though not for support but for aligning your torso straight. In order to avoid a contact between lower back and the wall, you can place a soft piece of cloth in between them.
If performing this pose is proving to be difficult for you then you can begin with the pose Uttanasana (the Standing Forward Bend) and Adho Mukha Svanasana (the Downward Facing Dog). After you have completed the two of them, you will be able to do the Staff pose more easily. In order to keep your muscles engaged, you can move on to do the Bharadvajasana I (Bharadvajasana) and Purvottanasana (Upward Plank Pose) asanas.