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Yoga Props for at Home Practice

By Janice Krakowsky

TUE DEC 01, 2020

It is true, that to do yoga all you need is yourself. I love the saying, "if you can breath you can do yoga."

It is also true that you can use different props as tools to enhance your practice both for relaxation and for creating resistance or strength.

As we have been moving and practicing yoga more at home recently, I thought I would share different props that you can use to aid in your practice. I don't believe you need to spend a lot of money on props and you can get creative by using what you have around the house as well.


If you were looking to invest a little in yourself and your practice here are my go to traditional yoga props: Blanket, blocks, strap, and bolster.

Blankets

This can of course be any blanket you have around the house and you can explore what you like depending on what you are using it for. The traditional Mexican yoga blankets are great because they can be quite firm in offering support, but still soft to provide cushion. I like to use it as a yoga teacher when instructing because it makes things easier and uniform when describing how to fold it up. So look around your house for different size and textured blankets and see what works for you or get yourself a new one.

Ways to use your blanket:

Seated under the hips to lift the hips and support your posture
Seated under the hips to lift the hips and support your posture

Table or Lunge- Under the knees for cushion or support
Table or Lunge- Under the knees for cushion or support

Savasana- under the head as a pillow or under the knees to support the low back
Savasana- under the head as a pillow or under the knees to support the low back

A blanket is nice to cover up with during savasana or folded across the belly to add a little weight and aid in grounding down

Twists- under or between the knees for support in the hips and back
Twists- under or between the knees for support in the hips and back

Straps

Yoga straps can be replaced by belts, towels, bathrobe straps, jump ropes or other long items that can offer length.

The yoga straps come in different sizes. If you are on the shorter and more flexible side the 6foot strap should work for you. If you are taller and a little tighter, I would recommend the 8ft strap. There are 10ft straps as well, but I think they can sometimes be more cumbersome, it just depends what you are using it for. There are the loop strap and the buckle strap and again that depends on what you are using it for and your personal preference.

Ways to use your strap:

Should opening- activation
Should opening- activation

Cow face- extending your reach
Cow face- extending your reach

Hamstring- extending your reach
Hamstring- extending your reach

Twisting- adding resistance and arm strength
Twisting- adding resistance and arm strength

Blocks

Blocks offer support as well as help to bring the floor closer to you in certain poses so that you can benefit more from the stretch. They can also be great for aiding in balancing poses. I'm sure there are alternatives to yoga blocks, some suggest books, but personally I like the traditional yoga blocks. You can get them pretty inexpensively too.

They come in 2 sizes 3" and 4". Which is better for you really depends what you are using them for. So look below at the poses and decide where you might fall as for as your flexibility. They can also be made from different materials. I enjoy both the foam and the cork, but for different things. The cork are great for stability work, the foam is good when using for support or cushion.

Ways to use your blocks:

Cobbler- support under the thighs and legs
Cobbler- support under the thighs and legs

Supported Bridge- under the pelvis
Supported Bridge- under the pelvis

Wide leg fold- under the hands
Wide leg fold- under the hands

Balance- under the hand in warrior 3 or balancing half moon
Balance- under the hand in warrior 3 or balancing half moon

Hip swings- standing on the move through hip range of motion
Hip swings- standing on the move through hip range of motion

Lunge and lunge twists- under the hands for support to keep in alignment
Lunge and lunge twists- under the hands for support to keep in alignment

Bolsters

Bolsters can be replaced with couch cushions, pillows, a couple folded blankets, and blocks, but there is something about a yoga bolster that I just love. Feel free to use what you have to support your body in more restorative ways and add this one to your wish list until you're ready.

These come in many shapes and sizes. I like the rectangular one that measures 6"x12"x24"

Ways to use your Bolster:

Savasana- under your legs

Child's pose- laying over the bolster

Bridge and leg's up the wall- under the pelvis

Laying halfmoon-under the ribcage
Laying halfmoon-under the ribcage

Reclined butterfly- along your back
Reclined butterfly- along your back

Downdog- under your forehead
Downdog- under your forehead

Balance- stand on it and play with balance
Balance- stand on it and play with balance

Walls and Chairs

Depending on where you practice these props should be easily available to you and help with feedback and balance. They can also aid in pose progressions by lessening the load.

Ways to use the wall and chair:

Triangle and balancing half moon- back against to see where you are in space
Triangle and balancing half moon- back against to see where you are in space

Chair Squat- support and alignment
Chair Squat- support and alignment

Downdog- lessen the load
Downdog- lessen the load
Support in standing poses like Lunge
Support in standing poses like Lunge

Relaxation- legs ups to unwind
Relaxation- legs ups to unwind

There are countless ways to use these props and you can continue to invent more as you explore and practice with curiosity. IT's fun to get creative in your sequences and poses to move in different ways. I would love to hear from you if you've found a unique way to use a yoga prop or even a unique item that you use as a yoga prop.

Here's a video where I talk about how to use the different props

Yoga Props for Practice