Yoga has come a long way from its humble origins, when practitioners shared its secrets through sacred texts and oral teachings. However, just because it is an ancient method of connecting the mind and body doesn’t mean it has to stay in the 4th century. With modern technology and advanced equipment, even a newbie can get the best stretch of their lives, improve balance, and connect with their inner-self.
From SwellWomen, keep reading for a look at yoga today, and how these 21st-century changes can take your practice to a new level.
Apps for Your Mat
With thousands of poses readily accessible at the touch of a finger, cell phones are by far one of the best tools in your yoga toolkit. Huffington Post explains you can find some terrific video instruction, and there are apps galore for learning new forms and poses. Everything you ever wanted to know about yoga is just a click away, waiting to be explored. It’s a chance to keep up your practice at home, outside, or even when you’re traveling.
Glo is a popular app that features 16 yoga styles for any level of exercise. It also comes with more than 4,000 classes on demand. You can use this app on any device, whether that’s a tablet, your PC, or your smartwatch. For those just getting started with yoga, check out Yoga for Beginners, a free app that allows you to also work out anywhere, anytime – a yoga studio “in your pocket.” This too can be used on your smartphone.
One caveat though: You need to have a phone that is up-to-date to handle sophisticated apps, and ideally, you’ll have a provider offering unlimited data. Thankfully, many service providers offer money toward a new phone if you switch over to their plan when yours expires. If you truly want to get into the best shape of your life and you’re using an older phone, it might be time for an upgrade.
Regardless of which phone you choose to use, pair it with Bluetooth headphones, earbuds, or even a portable speaker so you can listen to yoga instruction or soft music during your practice.
Since yoga has become more mainstream, there is an abundance of non-technical equipment to help you achieve your goals. For example, DoYouYoga explains using products like yoga straps can help you with maintaining poses and posture. Enthusiasts of any level can benefit from using them when learning new positions, holding tough ones longer, or simply working on alignment.
Yoga blocks are another versatile tool. You can employ blocks to help you experience poses in new ways. They come in a variety of sizes and shapes, and most of them are firm and made from cork, wood, or foam. Try a few different options in a store or ask your instructor for suggestions of what would suit you best.
Last but not least, consider adding a bolster to your arsenal of yoga tools. They are softer than yoga blocks and resemble long pillows. The bolster helps you achieve the pose you need without stretching beyond your limits. You can use them for a wide variety of yoga positions to help align your back or legs so you don’t overreach or hurt yourself.
Connect in the Community
Don’t discount the value of connecting with other yoga enthusiasts as you do your exploring. This is especially important for seniors, who need to stay as socially connected as possible. Yoga is a great way for people of all ages to connect, but especially seniors who may be facing periods of loneliness. Yoga is a great indoor exercise for seniors, safe and low impact as well.
Getting in touch with others who are on the same journey as you is a chance to tap into support and ideas. Talk with others in the yoga community, whether in class or online, and you’ll be amazed at how valuable their insights and support are.
Yoga certainly has reached a wider audience than ever before. Long gone are the days of strict adherence to the purest method. Now with the help of yoga tech and equipment, anyone at any age can start practicing yoga.