Like many people, I was away from home for the holidays. Luckily that didn’t mean I had to be away from my yoga practice. Like outdoor running, which can be enjoyed virtually anywhere and requires minimal equipment, the same can be said about yoga. So the question to ponder when traveling is not ‘Can I?’, but ‘How Do I?’. The big concern is how to fit it in. While it’s a little challenging to find the time. It can be more challenging to find the space – both where you’re staying and in your luggage.
I was staying with family and had planned to practice at a local yoga studio, unfortunately most were closed for the holidays. So, I needed a plan B. In my past life as a ‘road warrior’ software consultant, I’d come across the Yoga Paws product (http://www.yoga-equipment-store.com). These are little sleeves that wrap around hands and feet and feel like a yoga mat on the bottom. They eliminate the need for a mat, allowing hands and feet to stay in place on hardwood, tile, carpet (I’ve only tried them on low pile carpet), etc. They really work and score big points for being compact.
My only remaining concern was to find something to sit/lay down on for seated and reclined poses. While you can get by with just the Yoga Paws, I often travel with my dog – who sheds constantly – so bare floor is not an option. To remedy this, I take along my Yogitoes towel (http://tinyurl.com/ys7ysp). I primarily see these used as a towel to lay over a yoga mat, but they are also terrific as a packable mat. One caveat is that this towel can feel slippery. To cut down on that, I always wash and dry it without using fabric softener (air-drying is best). In addition, before practicing I spray four points of contact (2 hands and 2 feet) with water. For where to spray, just get on the towel in Down Dog position. Note where your hands and feet are placed. Those are the spots to wet down. Spray until the spots feel damp, not soaking wet.
These are two of my favorite yoga products for travel. Hope you find them useful too.