I've been yoga prop adverse in the past but have slowly incorporated more props into my regular practice. The more and more I practice, the more I see props place in yoga. Even for someone who is relatively flexible, props allows me to move further and/or relax into the pose.
The yoga strap has found it's regular place in my practice. It's been with some trial and error that the strap has found it's place. My inability to loop the strap has been my biggest challenge! :)
And as usual I've fished around to get a couple key points about yoga straps. Here's what I found:
Typically yoga straps are made of hemp or cotton and are between 6 to 8 feet long. I opted to get two straps with different lengths just to be sure (and honestly, try to encourage my husband to use one to help with his posture!)
Duskyleaf.ca states three main reasons to use a yoga strap.
#1 - Strap in and Relax
Essentially let the strap secure your specific body part into a pose or let the strap carry the weight of your body part to increase the stretch.
#2 - Binding your Time
Allow the strap to make connections between hand and foot or hand to hand.
#3 - Better Blindfolded
In the end of practice while in savasana, use the strap just like an eye pillow to encourage the eyes to relax and block out any extra light.
What prompted my exploration of yoga straps this week is that I tried a new DVD called Hatha & Flow Yoga for Beginners by Tamal Dodge. During the Hatha portion of the DVD, he uses the strap in many unique ways that I have never tried before. For example, using the yoga strap with the upper body during a modified warrior I pose (seemed to help stack the shoulders over the hips better and engage the arm muscles more) and single leg happy baby pose (allowed for greater hip range of motion).
Again, I can't reiterate how much I still need to learn about yoga and how to incorporate the yoga strap into poses. All this work is building on my knowledge and experience to be a teacher one day!
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Aspiring Yoga Teacher
I've practiced yoga since I was a pre-teen and have always found it to keep me centered. I will be a teacher one day and this is my journey to discover teaching and practice.