If you are a yoga practitioner, you know that blissful feeling you experience when walking out of the room after a mindful and heart-opening class. If you partake in the ganja, you are familiar with cannabis’ relaxing and calming effects. For years people have been using yoga and cannabis together to find their perfect state of enlightenment. Now, in modern days – along with the hybrid yoga classes like hot, circus, and acro-yoga – people are publicly combining cannabis and yoga to try to achieve the ultimate bliss.
However, there is controversy over the use of marijuana while practicing yoga: some believe that using ganja is completely contradictory to the ultimate yoga goal, and that smoking pot hinders one’s focus, clear-mindedness, and purity. It’s said that using an external source to achieve bliss is only going to mask the real experience, but others say that additional stimuli can heighten the experience.
How Can Cannabis Enhance Yoga Practice?
There are many avid yoga practitioners that rave about cannabis’ ability to enhance your yoga practice. Ganja allows your mind to open even more, enables you to go deeper into exploration, and more readily find bliss. People use both marijuana and yoga to find their higher selves.
People can be incredibly competitive, always feeling as if they have to be on par with their neighbor, or even surpass them – even in yoga class. Weed can remove that need to compete. It releases the desire to look over to the mat next to you, and instead simply concentrate on oneself in that moment in time on your mat. This, in turn, releases your mental barriers along with many physical barriers to which your body is confined. Many people with physical discomfort and injuries find that they can only do certain poses with the helpful pain-release that cannabis provides.
With more research being done on marijuana and yoga’s beneficial effects on the mind and body, both are fast becoming popular forms of alternative medicine. Cannabis has been found to reduce pain and inflammation, help control muscle problems, and even mental illness. New studies are showing that it may help kill certain cancer cells and reduce others.
Yoga is beneficial for your body, mind, and soul. It has been proven to lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar, as well as increase strength and flexibility. Yoga helps you focus inward to be more pleased and happy with yourself, which gives you an overall feeling of contentment. Many people who practice yoga find that it helps them to maintain their health and well-being, improve physical fitness, relieve stress, and overall enhances their quality of life.
How to Enjoy High Yoga Responsibly
Getting high before practicing yoga is a decision for each individual. Just take a few things into consideration before you roll that joint and unroll your mat.
Don’t be a newbie to either
Be sure you know how you feel after toking up. Smoke and sit on the couch with friends, or go for a walk out in public surroundings. Take a yoga class completely sober so you have an idea of what you’re getting yourself into. If you walk into a crowded room you want to feel comfortable and in control.
Also make sure you are able to keep your balance. You don’t want to be standing in mountain pose and topple over into a fellow student. Be conscious of any change or difficulty in your breath when you smoke, because every asana (the poses or postures adopted in yoga) flows with the breath. Also keep some water nearby to avoid cotton mouth.
Stick to a class you’re familiar with
Preferably go to a class that you’ve been to before. A power yoga class is one you probably want to avoid. You’re trying to enter into a state of bliss, not necessarily break a sweat. Relaxing, restorative, gentle, or yin classes would be the highest recommendations (pun intended). These will work best with the calm state your mind has already entered.
Know your strain
Again, preferably smoke a strain you are familiar with. Indica is highly recommended due to its calming effects, body high, and reputation for reducing anxiety. You may want to look for a strain that is high in CBD, but again the decision is yours.
One thing I personally would recommend is eating an edible. Edibles give you more of a body high without the mental fog rolling in. Your body will feel flowy and lifted up on cloud nine, while your mind will still be present.
As a yoga instructor, I would not recommend getting high before every class, as you will be provided an illusion of what the practice of yoga is supposed to give you. However, taking a puff every now and then before a class or your home practice can give you a whole new perspective and can open your mind to another realm.