One of the greatest benefits of yoga is that it teaches us to always be at peace with our environment. Taking this mentality further, what better way to continually achieve harmony with the space you practice in than to take yoga into new environments? It’s becoming easier and easier to do just that, thanks to the growing trend of outdoor Pop Up Yoga classes across Canada!
Along with the standup paddle yoga classes we wrote about last week, more instructors are taking their pupils to beaches, as well as parks and other public outdoor spaces, for pop up classes. We love the spontaneity of this trend, as well as the ability to enjoy yoga in new, yet sometimes familiar places.
Most popular types of yoga are available in this format, including Hatha and Flow. Many classes are by donation or free, so there are no excuses to miss out!
In our beautiful home of Vancouver, some outdoor classes are offered downtown near the Art Gallery and financial district — concrete spaces that are far from traditional yoga studios. We love the idea of practicing with our fellow yogis here because it’s a refreshing change and a new challenge. Some teachers offer a great combination of asanas and yoga philosophy – so you can learn more about your practice, and learn new tools for your daily “yoga off the mat.”
As you may expect, there is an increased potential for distractions in public spaces, so beginner outdoor yogis will need to remember to keep a strong focus on each asana they perform, regardless of the increased visual and auditory stimuli.
Which is, truly, the goal of your yoga practice – to be able to stay in-tune with your inner state, while ignoring the external noise.
As always, instructors recommend bringing plenty of water and a towel as these may not be available nearby. Gotta stay hydrated, for extra grounding. Particularly for outdoor classes on hard or potentially uneven surfaces, it’s important to practice on a great yoga mat — we love The Black Series from Manduka for its dense construction which ensues comfort wherever you use it.
From major centres like Vancouver, Calgary and Toronto coast to coast and many places in-between, finding a yoga class in your city has never been easier. Check with your local studio for instructors offering pop up this month. Take advantage of the rest of the summer – explore, and get playful in your practice.
Do you know of a great outdoor yoga class in your neighbourhood? Please share with our growing community below, in the comments area!