Yoga is now one of the most popular forms of low-intensity exercise. To take the practice to the next level, many practitioners are starting to acquire accessories like yoga blankets. Versatile and affordable, yoga blankets are an excellent prop to pick up – regardless of whether you’re an expert or a beginner. As long as you’ve got a breathable yoga vest, a comfortable mat and a firm blanket, you can practice a wide range of asanas from the comfort of your own home. In this article, we explore yoga blankets in more detail.
Yoga blankets can be used in a variety of different ways. One of the most popular uses is for support during seated asanas. Providing additional height, the blanket allows the legs to relax and provides support for the lower back. Male practitioners often find seated asanas uncomfortable because of their tight hips; thankfully, a yoga blanket can provide additional height to make the posture more comfortable. Blankets can also be used in restorative poses such as Corpse Pose. Placing the blanket under your back can help to release tight muscles in the back, neck, and shoulders to leave you feeling supple and revitalised. Additionally, the blanket can be used to provide comfort and warmth during restorative postures.
One of the most popular types of yoga blanket is the Mexican blanket. Typically, these are hand woven and crafted from absorbent cloth. As these blankets are machine-washable, they can last for years if looked after correctly. Mexican yoga blankets can be found in a wide range of colours and styles; this means that you can choose a design to suit your preference!
Mexican blankets are often used for regenerative and Iyengar yoga poses. Their versatile nature allows them to be used in a variety of different positions including under the bottom, head, and legs. They can also be used for comfort during restorative postures such as Corpse Pose, or to keep you warm when practising on cold flooring.
Another type of blanket is the wool yoga blanket. As these blankets are woven with a nicely finished side, they are ideal for adding comfort, padding, and warmth to restorative asanas. Much like Mexican blankets, wool blankets can be easily cleaned in a standard washing machine.
Some yogis prefer to use a cotton yoga blanket. While this style is less traditional, it offers many of the same benefits as the Mexican and wool styles. Typically, cotton yoga blankets are made from 100% cotton and feature a tighter weave than more traditional styles. The dense nature of the blanket makes them ideal for adding support and stability to asanas.
Yoga blankets are loved for their versatility. Unlike other props, a blanket can be folded into a variety of shapes to suit different postures. Whether you need the blanket to be rolled, folded, or laid out flat, you can adjust the shape of it to suit your specific needs.
Although yoga is a low-intensity exercise, that doesn’t mean you won’t break a sweat! Certain poses can be hard to maintain if you’re sweaty, so having something to dab yourself with is essential. While some yogis prefer to use a towel, using your blanket can kill two birds with one stone. As most designs are machine-washable, they can be cleaned at the end of each session just like a towel.
It’s no secret that some yoga props are pricey. Yoga blankets, however, are generally quite affordable. Not only are they cheaper than other accessories, they are also more adaptable. While other props have a single purpose, yoga blankets can be used for a variety of different things. In addition to supporting asanas, the blanket can also be used as a base until you can get your hands on a good-quality mat.
Yoga blankets are often used to support the body during asanas. Just like a yoga brick, the prop can be placed under the back, bottom, or head to give your body an extra lift. Using a blanket will also help to tilt your pelvis forward and prevent bad posture during your workout.
Certain poses place more stress on the joints than others. If you’re in perfect health, this may not affect you; however, if you’re an older practitioner you may start to feel pain and discomfort over time. Thank-fully, stress on the joints can be minimised with a yoga blanket. Placing the blanket under your knees or hips will add a little extra cushioning during difficult positions. Using a blanket during poses like Cat/Cow can help to take pressure off your knees and make the asana more comfortable. The prop can also be rolled up and placed under the legs for comfort and support.
At the end of the session, many yogis like to use a restorative pose to relax and recharge. When you’re trying to relax, there is nothing worse than being cold. Unfortunately, this is all too common during yoga classes that are carried out on hard floors. Thankfully, taking a cosy blanket to wrap yourself up in will ensure you can relax without getting chilly. Your muscles may feel a little sore after your workout, so keeping them warm is essential for quick recovery.
Whether you’re hoping to use the prop for support, warmth, or comfort, a good-quality yoga blanket will benefit your practice. As yoga blankets are so popular, they can be found in a variety of different colours and styles. This means that you can easily find a design that matches your favourite yoga t-shirt! If you’re a complete beginner, it’s always worth seeking the advice of a qualified instructor before practising inde-pendently.