The Best Guide to Yoga Equipment for Beginners
Are you just picking up yoga and wondering where to start? We envy you for delighting in this magical time of discovery; each of us remembers the serendipity moment when everything seemed to come together perfectly in order to push us in the right direction.
Practicing yoga might become just an effective way to keep yourself healthy, or might become a life-long passion. In any scenario, good things are coming your way. The only small downside is that beginnings can also be confusing and cause you to fret: where to buy my yoga equipment? What equipment do I really need for yoga? Am I over-doing this? What are the best brands for basic yoga equipment?
All these questions are normal curiosities when you’re just starting yoga, but can chip away from the fun and amazement of it all. And, after all, learning to fret less is one of the chief purposes of yoga (and especially of mindfulness), so let’s get these doubts out of the way a.s.a.p.
Through this guide, I will attempt to walk you through the best answers to these questions and more. Bear in mind that as yoga styles and the times themselves change, the info in the article will also need to be updated. So, feel free to bookmark it and return to the page from time to time, as the contents will only get richer.
Yoga Equipment for Beginners 101
First of all, remember that you don’t need to stock up on everything at once, especially if you’re not sure about practicing any type of specialized yoga (like aerial yoga or dance yoga) on the long term. Still, I will walk you through the basics of each type of yoga as well, after we cover the list of essentials for yoga beginners. But, for just starting to practice yoga as a fitness routine (just a few poses or asanas), these essentials are more than enough.
The initial yoga equipment list you will need:
- A yoga mat: this needs to be comfortable but also reasonably sticky so you don’t slip while stretching
- A yoga mat bag: for carrying your mat around without it losing shape
- A water bottle: you will get thirsty during your workouts and it’s essential to stay hydrated, ideal for keeping your supply of fresh water or even lemon water on hand
- A yoga towel: no matter the type of yoga you practice or how peaceful it looks from afar, yoga is still a workout and I can promise you will sweat, especially if you sign up for hot yoga
- A yoga strap: you will use in order to deepen the effect of some of the stretches, or you will use for certain exercises in order to make them a bit more challenging
Extras to consider:
- A yoga DVD: if you’re not attending classes on the regular (though, as a beginner, you definitely should do that), a DVD can help you practice yoga at home instead of missing sessions because you can’t make it to class
- A yoga blanket: it’s not mandatory but it will help you relax better towards the end of your class while in savasana
- A yoga brick or yoga block: a good block can help yogis better position themselves during asanas, and also provides better comfort and relaxation during the less challenging parts of your yoga workout
What about Yoga Clothes? What Do You Need for Clothing?
To start with, you will only need a few items of special clothing in order to stay comfortable during yoga classes and to be able to perform at your best. In time, don’t be surprised if you find yourself passionate about collecting yoga clothing items.
Also, you should know that there are yoga inspired clothes for day to day use, too, for those who want to display their passion for yoga with symbols and so on. The same goes for yoga inspired jewelry and accessories: there’s no shortage of meaningful ways to make your outer appearance reflect your hobby.
But speaking about yoga clothes in the strict sense of clothes that you will need for practicing yoga, things are much simpler.
This is what you will need to be equipped for yoga classes:
- A pair of yoga pants (these need to be tight but comfortable, to allow you to push the limits of your flexibility further) – I like Gap and Lotus Leggings, as far as brands go;
- A yoga tank top (and, depending on your bust size if you’re a lady, also a sturdy sports bra): I like Gaiam tops and Yoga Rebel bras;
- A pair of comfy sneakers that you should only keep for indoor use and that should have really light and flexible soles: I like Allbirds wool sneakers for their ideal balance of warmth and airiness. Shoes are NOT required in most yoga classes and Yogi Toes are a great option.
If you just started out doing yoga and don’t want to go broke buying everything you need at once, I suggest you wear some other comfortable shoes or sneakers for a while. You don’t absolutely need specialized yoga sneakers, but you do need special clothing for yogis, so you should make that your priority if you need to choose.
Stay tuned for part two!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Miriam Cihodariu
Miriam Cihodariu is a former anthropology scholar and fiction writer turned marketing and content strategist. Her passion for human meaning and narratives goes into every text she creates. She is currently the editor of the BookYogaRetreats.com blog and she relishes every minute of it.