In recent years there’s been a rise in the use of tools being used during class. We’ve progressed from mats to adding blocks to incorporating inversion stools into the mix! Yoga is widely seen as an alternative form of fitness, making it increasingly popular among the masses. Due to its focus on the breath, and deep roots in meditation, health professionals are recommending yoga practice as “mindfulness” to just about anyone, and thus most commercial gyms you come across nowadays will provide some sort of “vinyasa” class. According to the latest stats, Americans spend $16 billion (£12bn) on yoga classes and equipment each year and it looks set to keep rising.
1. Darmha Wheel
Sri Dharma Mittra created this amazing tool in 1977 to help people gain increased mobility and flexibility in achieving postures they never thought they could do. It’s made from an eco-friendly, all natural and recycled ABS and PU material, as well as being lightweight and strong enough to withstand your body weight. £65 from YogaMatters.
2. Yogi Bare Acupressure Mat
The Yogi Bare acupressure mat works in a similar way to the ancient art of acupuncture – stimulating energy, vitality and a sense of wellbeing in the body. The gentle, painless pressure of the mat allows the body to relax and release endorphins, creating what the makers’ refer to as a “life force within the body”. It’s a great feeling, and also priced quite reasonably, at just £29.99.
3. Feetup headstand chair
If you love attempting headstands but always nearly whack the person next to you right in the chops, then this crafty device is perfect for you to practice your pose. The innovative inversion aid enables you to hold a safe and stable headstand posture without any pressure on the neck and spine. Pick it up for £120 from Yogamatters.
4. Apple watch
As one of the few wearables that have a dedicated yoga-dedicated tracking option, the Apple Watch is probably one of the best smartwatches for yoga, if you insist on wearing one, that is.
5. iBreve wearable
iBreve is a wearable that analyzes your breathing patterns and provides you with smart feedback before stress is about to rise, a wearable that is perfect for yoga since breath is the most important part.
Best Yoga Mats
Choosing the best yoga mat for you isn’t a decision that even a chill yogi should take lightly. After all, besides costing you money, it can really alter your practice. Here are our best picks