Yoga & Travel

You want to pack your bags and explore the world. You want to experience new cultures and a new way of life. You want to meet other travellers and hear their stories. You want to discover yoga practices in a foreign land with teachers you’ve once read about in books and online. You want to eat new food, drink coconuts straight from trees, and feel the heat of the sun on your shoulders as you walk through markets. You want to dance to the music of unfamiliar places and learn as much as you can of a foreign language. You want to master the customs of this vibrant society and do as the locals do when they greet one another. You want to walk on white sand beaches feeling the heat under your feet, climb mountains, lie in hammocks, get caught in tropical downpours, and smell the rain as it bounces off the dusty streets and notice how different it smells to the rain at home.

You want to travel.

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These days yoga and travelling almost go hand in hand, especially if you’re travelling across Asia. Everywhere you go there are drop in classes, retreats, and workshops. Some can be pricey but some can be fairly reasonable – just make sure to check out all your options before signing up.

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However, the act of travelling itself can take its toll on your body as well as your mind. You may be seated on a plane for 18 hours but you can still get your daily practice in – even at 36,000 ft!

With heavy legs and a groggy mind, what better time to do the small joint rotations from Pawanmuktasana part 1 for your fingers, hands, wrists, toes, feet, and ankles to get that blood flowing around the body.

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After that perhaps some pranayama and meditation from your seat with breath-awareness, yogic breathing, or some Nadi Shodhana:

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You may not be able to do Savasana (Corpse Pose) but you certainly can recline your seat, prop a pillow under your head for comfort, stretch out your legs letting them fall loosely to either side, let your arms rest too, focus on your breathing and relax for ten to fifteen minutes.

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Sitting on planes for long periods of time is tough, but sitting on trains, buses and cars is just as hard on the body. It is important to take breaks on these long journeys and stretch out with some yoga poses that you can do anytime anywhere.

Release that tension in your back from sitting down with Half-Moon Pose (Ardha Chandrasana)

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Stretch out that spine and counteract fatigue with Wide Legged Standing Forward Bend (Prasarita Padottanasana)

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Relax your whole body and strengthen your knees and thighs with Standing Forward Bend (Sahaja Uttanasana)

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Stretch out every inch of your body from the lowest part of your spine, hips, hamstrings, right up to your shoulders with Intense Side Stretch with hands behind in Namaste (Ardha Parsvottanasana left and right)

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Relieve stiffness in your neck and shoulders with Left/Right Waist Rotation (Katichakrasana)

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So look after yourself while en route travelling and allow yourself the time to take breaks to stretch out. Travelling can be tough on the mind and body but with yoga it can be a lot less stressful leaving you feeling fantastic for when you arrive at your destination ॐ

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