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5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

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5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

Yoga is perfectly suited to cannabis fans. It’s relaxing, spiritual, and focused on mental and physical health. It’s also non-competitive and low stress. But what about a yoga class that’s all about weed? One where you can show up baked or get high while doing a downward facing dog? Yes, cannabis yoga classes do exist! In Culver City, CA, there’s a yearly “420 yoga” session. And in San Francisco, you can take regular weed-infused classes. Other 420 friendly states offer similar activities. These kinds of cannabis-friendly classes help with sleep, stress, and chronic pain. But before you rush to sign up for one, there a few things that you should probably keep in mind.

5. You’ll Want to Smoke the Right Strain

5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

And the right strain is different for everyone. However, there are certain strains that pair better with yoga than others. Especially if you’re a beginner yogi, try an indica-dominant strain like Northern Light or Bubble Kush. It’ll keep you relaxed and your heart rate steady, which is exactly what you want during the practice.

An indica will also let you fully enjoy the dream-like state many people enter while doing yoga. Smoking a strain that makes you energetic or paranoid will likely ruin the experience for you. But no matter what kind of weed you consume, you’ll benefit either way. Ever heard of a “runner’s high?” Exercise activates the same endocannabinoid system that THC does. Combine the two, and you’re golden.

4. In Yoga, Breath is Extremely Important

5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

Practicing yoga is less about doing the “perfect” poses. Yoga is very focused on the breath. Deep breathing, rhythmic breathing…all of it is essential! That means you’ll want your lungs to be fairly clean and clear during your cannabis practice. Smoking a vape or eating an edible before, after and/or during class is probably going to be your best bet.

A joint or a blunt is likely too harsh and may cause you to start coughing mid-practice. You also will want to drink plenty of water. If you do indulge in an edible, make sure to only have a little bit or less than you can normally tolerate. It can make your practice amazing, but over-doing it can have the opposite effect.

3. Don’t Overheat or Overwork

5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

Yes, yoga is a calming exercise routine, but it’s still exercise. Make sure to wear comfortable clothes that give you a lot of movement and breathing room. Bring a towel with you to wipe off excess sweat, and a large bottle of water. If the room is cold when you first walk in, it’ll warm up quickly. There is such a thing as hot yoga, but it’s not for everyone.

Some people love to sweat it out while smoking some great bud. Others prefer a more gentle approach. Whatever you like, come prepared and don’t be afraid to ask the instructor questions or inform them of any injuries you might have. They’ll be happy you let them know.

2. Relax, There’s No Need to be Perfect at Yoga

5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

A big part of yoga is self-acceptance and self-affirmation. Your practice may begin with inspiring quotes or words of wisdom. You may also find yourself chanting, which is very grounding and can feel as good as a bong hit. Whatever your style, just remember not to stress. It doesn’t matter how flexible, in shape, or out of shape, you may be.

It also doesn’t matter what size you are or how much you weigh. Yoga is good for everyone. And it’s not a race or a competition. Sure, your neighbor may be pulling off some mind-bending moves on the mat next to you. And it might be tempting to try and fish for praise from the instructor.

But at the end of the day, what matters is that you came to yoga, you do your best, and you felt better afterward. Even if you have difficulty or feel sore or not so relaxed the first few times, don’t sweat it. You’ll get better with time and practice.

1. Remember to be Mindful

5 Things to Know Before Taking a Cannabis Yoga Class

While practicing yoga, it’s easy to let your thoughts wander and lose focus on your breath and movement. Anytime this happens, be sure to gently redirect your focus back to the yoga itself. Or, if you need a break, go into a “child’s pose” and just focus on your breathing.

If you include cannabis in your yoga sessions, it’s especially important to be mindful. As any weed lover knows, it’s easy to have wandering thoughts and “spacey” moments while getting high. That’s perfectly fine. Just remember why you came and what your focus is.

Julia Rubin

Julia Rubin is a Brooklyn-based author. Her work has appeared in publications like the North American Review, The Lascaux Review, and Sierra Nevada Review, and she has written for a variety of online media companies like AllDay and Wetpaint Entertainment

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