Showing up prepared for yoga class ensures you can focus on your practice without distractions. While you don’t need much equipment, bringing certain essential items can make your time on the mat more comfortable and productive. Here’s a look at yoga class basics to have in your gym bag.
Yoga Mat for Yoga Class
A good mat is the most obvious must-have for yoga class. Mats provide padding and traction to cushion and stabilize poses. Standard sizes are 24 x 68 inches up to 26 x 78 inches. Opt for thicker mats (at least 1/4-inch) if you need more cushioning. Make sure your mat is not worn out or slippery. If renting a studio mat, bring a large towel for hygiene and traction.
Prepare Yoga Clothes for Class
Wear flexible, breathable fabrics that move with your body. Form-fitting leggings or shorts allow unrestricted movement. Go with shirts that won’t flip upward and expose your belly during inversions. Take layers like coverups or hoodies to stay warm in relaxation. Avoid complicated straps, buttons or bags that could catch. Change out of work clothes for comfort.
Yoga Towel is Useful
Towels serve multiple purposes like padding thin mats, absorbing sweat, assisting with traction, and providing an extra layer of hygiene. Opt for microfiber towels that grip well when placed over your mat. Keep a small hand towel on hand to wipe sweat as needed.
Blocks help align postures and deepen stretches for beginners. They also assist with balance or provide support in challenging poses. Standard studio blocks are 9 x 6 x 4 inches. Bring your own to class if the studio doesn’t provide them. Foam blocks are lighter than wood.
Water Bottle is Essential
Stay hydrated by sipping water before, during and after yoga. Dehydration exacerbates fatigue and muscle cramps. Choose a leak-proof bottle with a straw or flip cap for easy accessibility during class. Glass bottles tend to get slippery. Hydrate well in heated classes.
Straps improve flexibility and stability in poses. Looped straps allow you to bind or extend reach in seated and standing postures. Bring a 6 to 10 foot strap adjustable with a buckle or knot. Straps support proper alignment and prevent overstretching.
Yoga Mat Spray
Misting your mat with spray before Hot Yoga provides a cooling effect as it evaporates. Made with a blend of water and essential oils, the spray also provides a soothing aroma during practice. Reapply lightly when needed. Avoid making your mat slippery.
Non-slip socks worn during practice prevent sliding on a sweaty mat. They also protect and warm feet in chillier studios. Look for grippy rubberized socks that hug feet securely. Only wear socks if you need more traction.
Bolsters support the body in restorative postures for deep relaxation. Cylindrical bolsters are approx 24 inches long and 6 inches in diameter. Bring your own or use studio provided bolsters to open the chest, hips and release the lower back. Eye pillows also aid rest.
Female yoga students can pull long hair back into a ponytail or bun to keep it contained and off your face/neck during inversions. Bring multiple ties and headbands as needed to control flyaway hairs throughout active flows and prevent distractions.
Being prepared for class allows you to turn your attention inward and focus on your breath, movement and meditation. Pack yoga class essentials like mat, water, towels and props to support your practice. The less distractions, the more you can flow peacefully and mindfully.