Yoga on vacation - where to start?
When you're at home it's easy to find time to do some yoga exercises or to go to the yoga studio for an hour, but when traveling it gets a little more difficult. Below are 5 ways how you can enjoy yoga during your holiday (and on the road), wherever you are!
1. Don't be too hard on yourself!
It may not be possible to do your normal yoga practices every day, but something is better than nothing, right? One day you simply prefer to lie on the beach or you want to soak up culture in the city. Decide for yourself what is realistic and achievable and stick to it.
20 minutes a day or 3 times a week should be feasible and also enough to make a difference. A few short sun salutations every day often works better than a very long session once every two weeks. So don't plan too much, but do make a plan. And whatever rhythm you choose, it's the regularity that really makes it happen, and the routine that helps you stay focused.
2. Think about which yoga exercises you are going to do
Write down some yoga poses, save some YouTube videos with useful exercises or take a book with you that contains yoga exercises. This is ideal, especially if you normally practice under the supervision of a teacher and are not used to doing exercises alone.
If you have practiced independently before, a practice card is super handy. It is small and foldable (fits in any hand luggage), and lets you easily choose a yoga routine for, for example, 15, 30 or 45 minutes of practice.
Because you have a number of exercises at hand, you don't have to think about what kind of exercises you are going to do and it is much easier to just start and quickly get into a nice flow.
3. Leave your heavy yoga mat at home!
You may not feel like carrying your yoga mat with you on vacation, but nowadays you have so many types of yoga mats especially for traveling, as well as yoga towels that easily fit in your suitcase and take up little space. Yoga towels can also be used as a towel or beach towel! So you really don't need extra space in your suitcase for this ;-)
The great thing about yoga is that you can do it anytime, anywhere, and you don't need much. Whether on the beach, on the plane or on the train. Waiting for your flight will be a lot more relaxed if you stretch your neck a few times and let your shoulders roll. Too tired to exercise? A few gentle Yin Yoga exercises upon arrival will help you release any tension and ensure a good night's sleep. A handy tool for this is an eye pillow, which can also help if you suffer from jet lag.
4. Yoga is not just asana
You can “do” yoga every day without even setting foot on your mat. Is your plane delayed or does the car have a flat tire? Then use this time to meditate. When things don't go the way you want, take a moment for pranayama and take a deep breath.
If you are often on the road or have to sit for a long time, take advantage of this by not doing an asana, but for example focusing extra on the yamas and niyamas. Are there ways to better integrate these into your life? For example, when traveling, svadhyaya (self-study) is very eaasy applicable; with a good book on the plane. Are there more yamas or niyamas you can practice this holiday?
In addition, you can also relax by putting nice meditation music on your phone so that you can completely shut yourself off with earplugs in.
5. Find a local yoga studio or book a yoga retreat
Today yoga can be found everywhere. Before you travel, check if there are any yoga classes in your area and go for it! You will probably learn new things this way and meet nice new people. A retreat gives you the chance to take a break, really focus on your practice and take that with you on your next journey.
Enjoy your holiday!