Yes, they DO go together! Whether taking a long car trip or flying high at over 20,000 feet for over 36 hours (my upcoming trip to Bali), asana and meditation can make your trip so much more pleasant! When we are on the move, we need poses that are grounding, nourishing and calming to the system. A practice that stirs you up, is focused on Vata energy and has a lot of transitions may not benefit the mind, body and spirit in the best ways.
Here are a few of my tips for bringing asana and meditation on the road with you while you travel…
1. Utilize asanas that connect and ground you into the earth. By connecting our hands, feet and bodies to the earth, we are able to stabilize our emotions and systems. In establishing this “rooting” we can eliminate some of the anxiety that comes along with travelling from one place to the next. In addition, because travel requires us to be “on alert” as we enter new spaces, it can be helpful to turn inward for a few moments with some forward bends to help balance out the senses. My recommended poses include: Adho mukha śvānāsana (downward dog); Uttanasana (standing forward fold); Paschimottanasana (seated forward fold); Balasana (child’s pose); and Viparita Karani (legs-up-the-wall pose).
2. Meditation can happen anywhere when you are travelling. Just make sure your valuables are safe! Meditation during travel can allow us to quiet our minds and can enable us to take a vacation from our vacation! A super-simple meditation I like to do, especially when flying, is to rub my hands together to generate a little warmth, and then cup my hands over my eyes while breathing deeply. This helps to create some darkness and allows me to turn inwards. Guided meditations can also be helpful when travelling and there are many free apps that can assist with this. One of my favourites is calm.com with meditations of various durations and calming sounds to accompany them.
3. Remember that yoga is everywhere. When travelling, I enjoy seeing yoga in people and action. I remind myself that yoga really is everywhere and ask myself how I am living my yoga in that moment. Whether it is assisting someone who needs help with their luggage, chatting with someone sitting next to you or connecting to a new space…all of this is yoga. It can be hard sometimes if we arrive late, miss a connection or get lost driving through a city, but just remember that these are all experiences to savour and relish on this journey.
What are your tips for travel?
I wish all of you happy journeys! Namaste!