So you've signed up for your first yoga class, congratulations! But what should you bring to yoga class?
Below, we provide a generalized list. Adapt to best fit your preferences or type of class, but this list will get you off to a good start.
What to Bring to Yoga Class?
Bring loose-fitting clothes, a water bottle, a mat and a towel. In addition, there are a few other items that will make your experience more enjoyable. We'll elaborate on this list below:
You don't have to spend a fortune outfitting yourself for your first yoga class. The basic tenet here is to bring loose-fitting clothes. Your clothes don't have to be new or expensive. You don't wear shoes during yoga class, and most students don't wear socks. However, you can wear socks if your feet tend to be cold.
Be aware, though, that wearing socks will decrease your traction and increase the likelihood of slipping. Most women wear “yoga” pants or a dance leotard with a T-shirt or blouse over it.
Men customarily wear loose gym shorts and a T-shirt. Keep in mind that while you want to wear something loose-fitting, you also don't want a “wardrobe malfunction” to occur when you do an inverted pose such as the downward dog.
(P.S. For women, a sports bra is a must.)
In yoga, it's important that you stay well-hydrated. During a hot yoga session, it's not uncommon to loose up to 1% of your body mass through sweating.
Ensure you have enough fluids by bringing a full re-useable water bottle rather than buying a disposable plastic bottles. If you're concerned about dehydration, top it up with electrolytes.
3. A Yoga Mat
While most studios have mats to rent, it's more hygienic to bring your own. You can get a decent starter mat for around $20 at a big box retail store. Having your own mat also provides you with the ability to practice your poses at home between your classes.
4. A Towel
A hand towel to wipe your brow during the class is a must. Some people also bring a bath-sized towel to roll up at the end of the mat, but any type of absorbent towel will work. It's not fun practicing yoga on a wet, slippy mat.
Men or women: If you have long, flowing hair, you will want to tie it back or pin it up so that it's not flying in your face while you do your poses.
This is optional depending on your type of practice. You'll likely be hot and damp after your yoga class, particularly a hot yoga class. You'll feel more comfortable leaving the yoga studio in dry, fresh clothes. Most yoga studios have a restroom in which you can change clothing.
7. An Enthusiastic, Open-minded, Ready-to-learn Attitude
Yoga takes a while; some would tell you years, to perfect and fully understand. A friend once told me he didn't understand all the emphasis on stretching and his breath.
It's not something that you can learn in one or even a dozen classes. An open mind will help you get the most out of your first class and set you up for a lifetime of learning.
What Not to Bring to Your First Yoga Class
We've talked about what to bring to yoga class. It's time to spend a brief moment on what not to bring.
Don't be that person whose cellphone rings in the middle of the class. It's best to leave your phone locked in your vehicle's glove compartment, or at least, in the corner, with the sound muted.
While we'd like to think everyone is honest, leaving your valuables in a cubby by the door can be an invitation to theft. Plus, you don't want to have to worry about them while you're learning and practicing.
While it's often impossible to leave everything behind when you enter the yoga studio, you'll get more from your first yoga class if you park your worries or work problems at the door.
If that's not possible, take care to leave them behind when the yoga class ends 🙂
The Final Word on What to Bring to Yoga Class
Yoga offers a myriad of benefits, including increased flexibility, improved muscle tone and assistance maintaining a balanced metabolism. Your first yoga class should also feel both exciting and fun.
Don't get stressed about not having all of the latest and most expensive yoga gear. You can get a lot out from a yoga class with minimum expense or stress. Remember: The most important thing you can bring is free – that open-minded attitude.