How To Shop For Yoga Clothes That Best Suit Your Yoga Type

Yoga can be meditative and gentle or physically active and challenging. So what are the different yoga types and which yoga clothes best suit your yoga type?

Which Yoga Clothes Best Suit Your Yoga Type?

Yoga is not a single discipline and the type of yoga you practice influences your workout wardrobe. Finding which yoga clothes best suit your yoga type is essential.

Gentle, Meditative Yoga

Contemporary Hatha yoga focuses on basic poses, called asanas, and is often the first type of yoga you'll experience. These classes are slower paced, making them good for beginners and people recovering from injuries. Classes emphasize stretching, basic breathing exercises called pranayama, and light meditation. When looking for yoga pants buy those that stretch, especially through the crotch. If you cannot find the perfect yoga clothes on sale, consider using existing clothing as yoga togs.

Gentle, Meditative Yoga

Iyengar

Named for B.K.S. Iyengar, its founder, this type of yoga lets students use aids to execute asanas. Which yoga clothes best suit your yoga type? Since you might use harnesses, incline boards, straps or blocks during sessions, avoid harem pants and flowing garments. Some yoga clothing stores have sales clerks who understand the different yoga traditions and can help you choose from tradition specific clothing lines.

Iyengar

Kripalu

This three-stage practice is a journey in self-discovery. At stage one, you discover how your body works with a series of asanas. At stage two, you learn to hold the asana while meditating. With poses, breath control and meditation firmly acquired, the student lets the body flow from one asana to the next without breaking the mind's meditative state. Which yoga clothes best suit your yoga type? Since stages are involved, you can create a look for each one. Consider a leotard during stage one and then end with a flowing near-ecumenical look.

Kripalu

Viniyoga

This gentle yet advanced yoga style lets students adapt yoga poses and goals for their own life's purposes. Emphasizing repetition, function, breath and sequencing, Viniyoga strives to reduce suffering, manage symptoms and improve life function. With this in mind, this tradtion's teachers modify yoga poses for each individual student. Even though it is gentler than Ashtanga yoga, Viniyoga can be as intense as the individual practitioner can stand. Which yoga clothes best suit your yoga type? This much freedom demands a creative yoga wardrobe.

Viniyoga

Sivananda

Named for a yoga Swami who never visited the United States, Sivananda yoga is centered on frequent relaxation and mindful breathing. Sivananda's goal is to maintain your health and your sense of wellness. Each 90-minute class features 12 asanas, executed after an opening relaxation (Savasana) and warm-up sequence. When looking for yoga pants buy ones made of soft, flannel-like fabrics that slow heat loss and manage perspiration.

Sivananda

Clothing for Active Yoga

Traditions that raise your heart rate and make you sweat call for something between sweat pants and a kimono. Watch for yoga clothing stores that also sell headbands and terry cloth wrist bands.

Clothing for Active Yoga

Bikram

Also called “hot yoga”, students execute asanas in a sauna-like environment. With a thermostat set to almost 100 degrees and 40 percent humidity, official Bikram classrooms warrant lightweight, breathable clothing. When shopping for yoga pants buy those that not only stretch but also wick moisture away from your body for efficient cooling. Sheer harem pants and sleeveless tops are modesty-preserving options.

Ashtanga

Regimented and challenging, this tradition features six demanding asana sequences. Practitioners, called “Ashtangis”, execute the asanas in rapid succession, moving from one to the next with each Vinyasa. When looking for yoga clothes on sale, watch for close-fitting clothing that won't interfere while you move from one pose to the next.

Ashtanga

Kundalini

Named for the root chakra, this yoga tradition is also called Laya, Sanskrit for absorption or extinction. Kundalini yoga is a synthesis of several traditions but is based on the belief that energy coils around the spine's base like a serpent. Practitioners strive to release this energy to expand their consciousness. For that reason, many devotees feel it is the most spiritual tradition. While Kundalini includes meditation, the poses and breathing exercises during the 60- to 90-minute long classes are strenuous. Adding and removing layers will help you control heating during asanas and slow cooling during meditation.

There are yoga types and classes for every fitness level and clothing to match any given yoga class. Once you have chosen the type of yoga you would like to practice, analyze the poses. Better yet, try a couple moves in the store's dressing room while wearing potential purchases. Consider starting with clothing colors that match chakra colors, the seasons or different moods. You've taken steps to improve your sense of wellbeing and deserve yoga clothing that is colorful, expressive and functional.

Kundalini

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