What is green yoga? Integrating sustainability into yoga

The teachings of yoga help us learn more about ourselves and the world we live in – and by helping us get more in touch with nature, they can also help us live a more sustainable lifestyle. Increasingly, as both yoga and sustainability become important values for many people in the west, people practice both of these in their everyday lives.

However, yoga and sustainability aren’t just two separate topics – they are intertwined in many aspects. Green yoga can help us live a well-rounded sustainable yoga lifestyle.

A harmony through our lifestyle

Yoga encourages us to live in harmony with the world around us. Its teachings can be something that sparks the interest to reduce our environmental footprint in us, a motivation to start integrating sustainability into yoga and live a sustainable yoga lifestyle.

Then, this can also lead us to make decisions with the environment in mind throughout our whole life – from choosing the foods we eat mindfully to commuting to work in a way that doesn’t harm the environment.

Make your practice green

However, aside from integrating sustainability into yoga as an everyday practice beyond the mat, there are also some more concrete steps towards making your practice on the mat more environmentally friendly. Despite yoga and sustainability being intertwined, a lot of the yoga gear on the market today is made without too much regard for the environment.

A lot of the clothing made for yoga practice is made in sweatshops by underpaid and exploited workers from crude-oil based plastic fibres and releases microscopic plastic particles into wastewater whenever washed. Many yoga mats are made from PVC – a material Greenpeace has dubbed the most environmentally-damaging plastic.

Following the principles of yoga, we should be looking for more sustainable alternatives – ones that aren’t as damaging to the planet and its people.

Whenever you’re buying yoga gear, please make sure to do a little research into its environmental impact. Who made the items and where? What materials were used? What will happen to the item once I no longer have use for it?

Just asking these simple questions and finding the answers to them from genuine and credible sources can make a world of a difference!

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