I've heard many friends, strangers, acquaintances and all asking what do they need to have with them to get started with doing yoga. What type of clothing? Equipments? Props? Tools? And the highlight of their enquiry - are these expensive?
Hence, would like to share some of my experience on key items you need to get started that doesn't break your purse, wallet or bank account ;)
So, here goes...one of the key items to really get you rolling in yoga class is to get yourself a proper workout attire that doesn't irritate or messing all over while you are working out and sweating! A proper yoga / activewear attire will ensure you and your body is "well-ventilated" or breathable with sweat being absorbed effectively and keeping your body temperature cool / dry at all times. It is also important that the attire keeps in place as much as possible especially when you are doing intense workout or inverting yourself upside down like standing forward bend, etc. where you'd like to be sure that your 'assets' are being covered / protected in place. There are many activewear brands out there that you can get one of these the likes of Nike, Lululemon, Lorna Jane, Londsdale, etc. or some of the more indie local brands such as Vipazana which may be more affordable and quality that is almost equivalent to the big brands. Leggings, tank or bra tops are the most popular attire to be worn on mat as they are designed to provide maximum body movement / function during your mat exercise.
Secondly, get at least 2 yoga blocks. For starter, you can get a reasonable foam block that is less than $20 for 2 blocks or you can invest a bit more and get the cork block which will be more hardy with better support. These yoga blocks are very handy especially when it comes to any kneeling hip flexor stretches, supine gentle backbends, or any other leg balancing cum stretch poses such as side angle pose where the blocks will be able to give you the extra height / support to get into the position safely especially in the beginning when your muscle is tight. Blocks are pretty much a one-time investment and especially those made of cork which will last for a very long time.
Next, these are optional but good to have and doesn't cost much between $15-$25 for each - yoga / pilates rubber mat (most studio provides them), massage ball & yoga belt / pilates resistant band / infinity belt.
The pilates rubber mat that you can get at your general pharmacy outlet such as Guardian, or any other sports outlet would be good enough to get you started which usually cost between $15-$20 or less (depending especially when they have promotion!) and as you progress further into your practice / workout with more intense / advance poses then you can consider to get more heavy duty rubber mat that will support or absorb the high impact exercises you'd be doing such as jumping into different positions, etc.
Yoga belt / resistant band / infinity belt is really good to have and only cost between $15-$25 or less. You can get these at any general sports outlet. These belts are good for assisting in shoulder stretching exercises such as rotation, backbends that include shoulder rotation mobility (such as king pigeon pose), hamstring stretch where hands / fingers not able to reach to the toes or ankle. Make these belts your best friend and soon you'll find you can bend more than before!
- Massage ball or simply inexpensive tennis balls are my all-time-best-friend after each of my yoga practice to help relax and release muscle tension, fatigue at the end. This is especially helpful after a tough, intense or energetic practice where there's a lot of muscle engagement / contraction done. The massage / tennis balls will be able to help release these contracted muscles to gently relax.
As you can see most of these are items are inexpensive and generally one-time investment that will last for quite some time until such time that you have progressed a lot more you can always invest or upgrade further (which most of us do ;)) to help support your more intense / advance practice!
Get started with yoga today with Vipazana.com :)