5 Ways To Practice Yoga While Traveling

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Are you currently planning your next travel adventure? While you’re likely eagerly anticipating all the wonderful experiences you’ll have, you may also be wondering ‘How can I keep up with my yoga while traveling?

As you probably already know, the magic of yoga comes with consistency. A regular yoga routine works wonders on all aspects of our health and well-being.

Naturally, therefore, we want to ensure we stay on track with our practice while we’re traveling. But when we’re busy seeing the sights, going from place to place, and living a totally different lifestyle, coming to our mat each day takes a bit of extra work.

So what can you do to ensure you keep up your yoga practice while on your trip? This article will look at how yoga and travel can be a perfect combination and how you can ensure you get your much-needed daily dose of yoga while traveling.

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Why You Should Practice Yoga While Traveling

Whether you’re traveling for the first or 50th time, there is no denying that traveling can be stressful and tiring. Yoga helps you stay calm and collected and thus is an antidote for navigating stressful situations in a foreign land.

What’s more, as you only need a yoga mat (and you can get many lightweight travel mats that are easy to transport), you can practice anywhere. 

I also find practicing yoga while traveling gives me a sense of familiarity. When traveling, our daily life is very different from usual, which can feel overwhelming. Coming to your mat is like coming home; it is a very comforting feeling and helps reground you and stop your emotions from running wild. 

Of course, another benefit of practicing yoga during your travels is to ease stiffness in your joints and muscles after long journeys. Nothing feels better than having a good stretch out after a long flight!

Doing some stretches or yoga while traveling may also help to ease jet lag as it raises your heart rate and respiration, which boosts the body’s circadian rhythm. Interestingly, studies have proved that exercising after travel reduces jet lag symptoms and helps you sleep better. Try these poses to help ease jet lag.

5 Ways To Practice Yoga While Traveling

As someone who has travelled extensively, I’ve found the following things extremely helpful for keeping my well-being in check and keeping up with my yoga practice while still making the most of my travels. 

1. Take the Opportunity to Practice Yoga Outside

If you’re enjoying traveling in a warm climate, make the most of it by practicing yoga outside in your new surroundings. This is a super easy way to practice yoga on a beach vacation. You can take your towel or travel mat to the beach and find a shady spot under a palm tree.

The stunning views and calming ocean sounds will take your practice to the next level, leaving you feeling blissful, grateful, and energized for an exciting day in paradise. Moreover, you can reward yourself and refresh in the ocean afterward. Sounds dreamy right?

However, you don’t have to be on a tropical beach to enjoy outdoor yoga. If you’re on a city break, locate your nearest park and combine a little exploration with yoga practice. Or, if you’re in the mountains, take your mat with you on your hikes and breathe in the freshest air you’ve ever felt with a spot of mountain yoga and meditation.

2. Check Out the Local Yoga Studios

If you like immersing yourself in local life and meeting locals while traveling, visit some local yoga studios. Thanks to yoga’s immense worldwide popularity, you don’t have to be in a big international city to find a yoga studio, although if your in one of these top yoga destinations you’ll be spoilt for choice.

Even if you’re in a non-English speaking country, you may still find yoga classes in English, especially if your somewhere popular with expats. For example, I used to go to a local studio with a Thai yoga teacher in Thailand. Although it was mainly locals in the class, the teacher would still teach in English. Moreover, the locals were extremely welcoming, and it was a great way to meet people.

If you can’t find local studios that teach in English, ask in the hotels and resorts. Many places offer free yoga classes to their guests but are happy for visitors to attend for a fee. 

Try local classes or a retreat for your dose of yoga while traveling

3. Go On A Yoga Retreat or Yoga Training Course

The best way to combine yoga and travel is to go on a yoga retreat. Some people choose yoga vacations over regular vacations because of the multitude of benefits retreats can offer. However, you can join a weekend retreat during your holiday if you prefer less commitment. 

By going on a yoga retreat, you won’t just ensure you keep up your practice; you’ll have the chance to deepen it and learn more. You’ll also experience new teachers, teaching styles, and potentially new yoga styles.

There is a huge variety of types of retreats available and the programs differ significantly from retreat to retreat. Some are very relaxed, where you attend yoga and meditation classes in the morning and then have the rest of your day to do your own thing. Others have full-day schedules with workshops, lectures, and activities. Moreover, many feature excursions and trips to see the local sights.

So if you go on a yoga retreat, choose one that meets your preferences and check out our article on how to choose a good yoga retreat. We recommend BookYogaRetreats for finding and comparing retreats. And be sure to check the reviews, so you know what to expect. 

Another popular option these days is combining a backpacking trip or longer break with doing a yoga teacher training program somewhere like India, Thailand, Bali or Costa Rica is also a popular and affordable way to explore a spiritual destination while deepening your yoga practice. You’ll also gain a certification allowing you to become a registered yoga instructor which gives you the option to change your career.

4. Plan A Go To Yoga Sequence

Another way to ensure you stay committed to your yoga practice is to have a simple sequence as your go-to routine. That way, you don’t have to think about what poses to practice; you just get on your mat and start moving. 

This is particularly helpful if you’re used to going to classes and need more confidence practicing on your own. Learning a short sequence beforehand will give you the assurance you need and empower you.

A similar idea is downloading an online yoga video on your phone to follow along. If the video is on your phone, you can still watch and follow it even if you have no internet connection.

Yoga near temple in Hampi, India - "How to practice yoga while traveling"

5. Set Realistic Expectations

When we travel, our day-to-day lifestyle changes dramatically. Therefore, it will likely not be possible to do your usual one-hour yoga practice each day.

This is why setting realistic expectations and going easy on yourself is essential. Set a small yet achievable goal for your yoga practice while traveling. Perhaps you could commit to a 20-minute practice three times a week.

I recommend this over a daily practice as some days you may have no time. For example, if you have an early flight and spend a large part of the day traveling, it may be unrealistic to squeeze in a practice. 

Final Thoughts On Practicing Yoga While Traveling

Getting on your mat regularly to practice yoga while traveling will benefit you in many ways. It helps relieve tired legs after long days of walking, reduces jet lag, and provides comfort and familiarity.

So follow the tips above and keep your mind and body nourished wherever you are in the world.

What’s your favorite way to practice yoga while traveling? Let us know in the comments!

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