As a practicing yogi of 15+ years and a lover of cannabis, I always wonder if there any benefits of combining the two. In fact, the way that I began practicing yoga was through smoking cannabis. I would chill, have a quick session and decide to stretch it out. I often would practice in the comfort of my own home but as I became more and more comfortable with my dosage and high mindset, I felt confident enough to go and try out a group yoga class. Sometimes, for many, the leap from practicing solo to a group is a big deal, but imagine throwing cannabis into the mix? It can be a bit daunting!
Ganja yoga is a trendy, new thing, and it’s been an exciting journey to develop and expand my practice while exploring the myriad of ways to get high. Through this experience, I’ve found new ways to grow through my breathwork but also feel like I am able to connect to my surroundings and the energy around me.
It may seem absolutely counterintuitive, but pairing cannabis and yoga can be a truly elevating experience. Weed has never been connected to exercise — it’s usually touted as a way to relax by vegging out and sitting back to be consumed by experiences. And on the opposite end, there are many people within the yoga community who don’t believe that yoga and weed go together. As yoga is a practice built to help grow through suffering, finding balance and still the mind through creating unity between your mind, body, and soul, there are many who see the use of substances of any kind to be detrimental to achieving these goals. While this is true for many, there is also a large group of people who are able to draw more from their practice by consuming cannabis before heading into a class.
For them, it can mean fewer mental and physical barriers and the inhibition to explore where they may not usually be able to (for example, those who suffer from chronic pain that wish to try out yoga).
Whether you’re a newbie to weed and yoga, or someone who is looking to dive deeper into their practice through natural, elevating ways, this guide can help you bring the two together with ease, and without fear. Read on to learn about a few things to consider before you do yoga while high.
*Note: Any use of cannabis while doing yoga must be taken with care. This post is meant to be purely educational and an attempt to help you refine both your cannabis use and your yoga practice. We encourage you to practice and consume safely and understand the normal way your body reacts to cannabis use prior to entering into a yoga class.
Pick The Right Bud For Your Experience
The first thing to make sure is that you have chosen a strain to indulge in that inspires a high conducive to practice yoga. If you’re smoking a particular strain, indica can bring about a strong body buzz that helps calm a busy mind. Take a slower moving yoga class, like yin or Hatha, and bring indica into the equation to bust any anxiety and stress you may be experiencing. If you’re indulging in another way, any level of CBD content can be a calming, rewarding addition to your yoga experience.
When you’re out and about, especially when you’re about to take a class, make sure that you have the ability to focus. This means not consuming so much that you won’t be able to understand what is going on or keep up with your yoga teacher’s instructions. Be aware and make sure you’re able to pay attention and keep your mind from wandering. If you find that your mind is going astray in the midst of your practice, take time to breathe, listen to your teacher’s words and be kind to yourself.
Breath is an integral part of yoga. Partaking in cannabis can impact your breathwork depending on which way you decide to consume. If you’re a longtime user of cannabis and have spent most of your time smoking or vaping it, your lung capacity may obstruct a full-body experience in class. If this is true for you, consider changing up how you consume cannabis before you take a class. A couple of weeks out, try out a new method such as edibles to feel the buzz but to help you engage in the proper breathing methods needed for yoga.
Speaking of edibles, something that can be so fun for other times may not be the best for yoga. It can bring about a dreamy, mystical and inspiring vibe that can help you tune into the energies around you. Timing is everything with edibles, and it’s a fine art that could mean the difference between a good class, and a bad one. Preparing beforehand and knowing the effects of the edibles you consume can help you time it to hit when you’re just about to start, or in the middle of class. Also, in some cases, yoga can help enhance the effects of your edibles, so make sure to keep your dosage a little lower the first time you try it out.
Just like any exercise, you will definitely get dehydrated in yoga. Lower-impact classes may not tax you too much, but bringing cannabis into the equation will definitely increase your need to keep hydrated. Drink lots of water to combat dry mouth and feel the mystical vibes.
Bringing yoga and cannabis together can be a fulfilling experience. For beginners, novices and experts alike, this can be another exhilarating way to experience cannabis and get fit – at the same time. While it may not make you an expert yogi or bring you to the brink of enlightenment right away, it will for sure help you along your way and relax and calm your mind to boot. Take these tips and practice safely, and responsibly!