As we enter this time of staying in, looking inwards and practising patience to tackle Covid-19 together, you may be wondering how you can keep up your regular Yoga practise or start Yoga without the equipment…Don’t Panic, it’s amazing how resourceful people can be in a time of crisis and recycling or reimagining the use of household things can make the everyday items in your home, suddenly become your self-care salvation!
Check out our Yoga Pantry ideas and turn your home into a makeshift Shala:
Books, board game boxes, a pack of A4 paper, old DVD box sets, tins of soup, tupperware containers either empty or filled with rice/dry goods or those folders full of paperwork you’re trying to ignore…
Scarfs, old fabric cut into strips, a yoga mat strap (if you have one). You can cut up an old t-shirt or towel into one long strip. Coat belts, dressing gown belts, belts in general….pretty much any belt will do!
*This is best for Yin, Restorative Yoga or Meditation* If you don’t have a yoga mat at home you can use a beach towel or a blanket laid on top of a rug or a carpeted floor to create a more supportive surface. Make sure it doesn’t slip easily before using it and be particularly mindful practising any dynamic movement without a Yoga/Exercise mat so you don’t hurt yourself. You can secure the towel or blanket in place with heavy objects like a tin of soup or paperweight at the corners to keep it safely in place.
Stacks of pillows, folded blankets or you can stuff a pillow case or laundry bag with your winter jumpers – you can adjust the firmness of your makeshift bolster to just how you like it! If you have a sleeping bag of thick blanket you can also roll these up and tie some string or ribbon around the sides and middle to secure it.
Throw/scatter pillows can be great, chair cushions or even the back pillows from the sofa. If you aren’t used to sitting in meditation comfortably you can sit against the wall to support your spine.
Take a rolling pin (or anything cylindrical and solid) and wrap it in a beach towel, if you have safety pins, string or rubber bands you can secure it with that.
Make-shift massage ball
Golf/ping ping/tennis balls, anything round really!
Use a clean sock or drawstring bag and fill it to about half way with dried rice and lentils/beans/buckwheat or flaxseed (you can mix any of these you have or use one kind). If you have essential oils at home you could put a few drops in rice first (in a jar or bowl) to infuse the rice with the scent (make sure to give the rice a good shake!). Secure the top of the sock/bag with a rubber band/hair band/ribbon or string.
Use a cup of Sea Salt from the cupboard in place of Epsom salts – if you have tea tree or any essential oils at home you can add these in too.
Setting a sacred space at home
No matter how small the space you have available, you can make it a sacred place to come to. It will also help in this time of isolation to create a space that feels different and dedicated to your self-practise. You can use scented candles, burn incense, sage or essential oils. If you don’t have those things to hand you could adjust the lighting in the room to make it more ambient, remove any distractions, remove your phone or put it on airplane mode & play some relaxing music. Take the time to sit for a few moments to focus on your breath, set an intention and become present before you practise or meditate.
About the writer, Liz Joy Oakley
Liz Joy Oakley is Yoga Teacher, Holistic Wellbeing Coach and Head of Vibes at MoreYoga, co-running our MoreMind Project with Stephanie Minchin, coordinating events, content and workshops focused on better supporting our communities mental and physical wellbeing. After starting her career in the fast-paced world of luxury fashion Liz came to Yoga after being diagnosed with Malignant Hypertension and Generalized Anxiety and left with the goal of helping others to lead healthier lives holistically. Liz went on to spent a year working at the Safe Childhoods Foundation in Indonesia, an NGO committed to combatting organized crimes against children, she began to understand the true benefits of Yoga, Meditation and Psychology as therapeutic tools and describes this as a time of total transformation.
Now back in London, Liz is passionate about helping people achieve a healthier, happier lifestyle through her work. She loves bringing people together, encouraging authentic connection and is happiest when facilitating retreats, workshops and events based around Yoga, Positive Psychology and Holistic Wellbeing.
Liz teaches Hatha, Vinyasa, Yin & Restorative Yoga, specialising in teaching Yoga, Mindfulness & Meditation to improve stress & anxiety. She combines this with her work as a Holistic Wellbeing Coach & is dedicated to spreading Joy through her work.
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