My Yoga Essentials

Everyone has their favorites that they just can’t live without.. for everything. Your favorite shirt, shoes, spatula, spot on the couch, you name it you most likely have a preference. When it comes to yoga, I'm not an expert or even a true regular practitioner, but I have found some of my own preferences in yoga mats, yoga blocks and yoga straps. I use my yoga mat almost every night when I do my nightly yoga. My routine varies a bit every night, but I use it to relax and stretch before bed. Between a semi-desk job and lifting weights, stretching is really important to me. 

Yoga Mat

Manduka Pro yoga mat
Manduka Pro Yoga Mat 
Click here to check it out
This mat is durable and works well to support me while I do most of my yoga on a carpeted floor. When I initially bought this mat I had hard ceramic tile under me and wanted something well padded and this definitely fit the bill. I have not seen much wear in this mat and only notice scuff marks from me dragging my feet, which are easily wiped off. I have had this mat for about two years now and it doesn't show any wear and tear. The only downside that I have for this mat is that it's a bit heavy. This probably wouldn't matter if I had a strap for those random occasions when I do yoga with friends, but it's still something to keep in mind.

Previously I had the thickest mat I could find from Walmart, but that just wasn’t cutting it. I was sliding everywhere and had to double the mat over on itself sometimes to get enough padding while on a hard surface. The above Manduka mat was definitely worth the money to me.

Yoga Block

manduka Yoga blocks
Manduka Recycled Foam Block
Blocks.. need I say much more.. They help me with my stretching or to help modify a pose that I can’t quite hold.. yet. I’m getting there.. but there is always room for improvement. These blocks have helped me a ton and are able to hold my weight without denting or loosing their shape. Definitely a good investment. you may not need a block, but I would definitely recommend picking one up just in case. I thought that I wouldn't really need one, but kinda wanted one, because why not? And I find that I use it more often because I have it, especially for restoration yoga.

Yoga Straps

Manduka Yoga Straps
Manduka Yoga Strap

I have found multiple uses for this yoga straps. They help me with poses where I cannot touch my hands or my feet together (like full bow pose) or they can be worn to assist with you posture. Check out this post on how to use yoga straps to improve your posture from Yoga Journal. Here is the instructions for setting up the strap for posture improvement. These straps are tough enough to handle what you throw at them and they’ve got enough grip that you not slipping and readjusting throughout the pose. You can just focus on your form.

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