The idea of using support props in yoga was an innovation of B.K.S. Iyengar, who began teaching yoga in 1936 in Mysore, India. One of the founders of modern yoga, Iyengar’s method, which is still widely practiced today, is a form of hatha yoga with a particular focus on precision and alignment of the body in the poses. He added props to help accomplish this - but his props were things he found around his home such as bricks, cushions, belts. He innovated from there, developing just the right tools to help the body achieve the correct alignment in each pose.
Props can be used by anyone, at any stage of their practice, and in any form of yoga. There are so many benefits to having a little extra support in the poses. Here is how props can help you:
Why is it helpful to stay longer in poses?
When we can linger comfortably in a pose, we have the opportunity to focus on the breath, to listen to what the body has to tell us. Holding a pose for longer develops physical and mental stamina, as well as builds confidence. And finally, supporting the body with props for yin yoga and restorative yoga allows the muscles to relax and the work can go deeper, beyond the muscles and into the fascia (connective tissue).
The world of props has evolved since Mr. Iyengar first picked up a building block to help a student reach into a pose. There are now many, many props available, many new-fangled inventions, so how to choose? I recommend that we really only need a few, well-chosen props. Each prop you choose should be useful to you in your practice. If you choose well, you will use and love your props for years. Prefer props that are high quality, made by eco-conscious and socially-conscious companies. Choose beautiful fabrics, textures and colours that will contribute to the harmony of your sanctuary.
My 6 must-have props
Of course you can be creative and use what you have around your home as a prop: sofa cushion, door frame, kitchen counter, stack of books, tie or scarf.
But I invite you to discover our beautiful HUM collection of yoga and meditation essentials.
As a result of my quest to discover just the right products to turn my yoga and meditation practice into a beautiful experience that would heighten all my senses, products that met my needs for beauty, quality, and the human touch, I have created this special collection of essential tools (and little luxuries too!). You will find all the props listed above, many feature our exclusive HUM fabric designs specifically created to subtly support your practice with patterning on pattern, message inside message — sacred calligraphic art and the resonant treatment of our mantra, our word: HUM. Mandalas and Mantras will resonate along with you during your meditation.
Each piece will help you to create a serene and inspiring atmosphere in your home and your practice sanctuary, add a powerful element of ritual, and make your practice a sublime and sensorial experience.
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