5 essential best yoga props

5 Best Yoga Props for Beginners

The Best Yoga Props for Beginners

Whether your brand new to practicing yoga, or looking to add the best yoga props to your home or studio practice, this collection below lists our favorite yoga props.

We love yoga props. And we are pretty certain that you will also appreciate having a prop or two (or all of them) available in your yoga practice.

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Why Use Yoga Props?

Depending on the type of yoga you practice, you may or may not use yoga props. Or least not use them very often. For example, when I began practicing Ashtanga yoga, after having practiced at a studio that focused a lot on restorative yoga (which is prop intensive), I was surprised to learn that props were rarely, if ever, used in the studio during practice. However, some practices regularly integrate yoga props.

Yoga props are also effective and sometimes essential accessories and tools for modifying yoga poses (asanas). For example, yoga blocks may help you feel more comfortable in a posture. Yoga blocks could also be helpful during injury prevention, stabilization, or recovery, depending on one’s body, abilities, fitness level, or comfort.

There is no shame to using yoga props.

In fact, many yogis and yoga instructors know well that yoga props can actually advance one’s yoga practice. Blocks, for example, can sometimes help yogis take their yoga to the next level, such as providing help easing into pigeon pose. In time, a yogi may discover that with regular practice with a block, they are ready to progress to the posture without the aid of a yoga block or other yoga aid.

The Benefits of Using Yoga Props

Why should you add yoga props or use yoga tools in your yoga practice? Some of the reasons to use yoga props are to:

  • Add support to postures
  • Enhance or protect range of motion in a posture
  • Make getting into a posture easier
  • Hold a pose longer or more comfortably
  • Increase accessibility of postures, particularly for people with injuries, tightness, or limited ranges of motion
  • Feel better, enjoy a posture more, to settle into a pose
  • Enhance safety or reduce risk of injury, such as in a more advanced posture

In addition, yoga props are useful for:

  • Specific yoga styles
  • Restorative yoga
  • Meditation
  • Yoga assists (or teaching yoga assists – think yoga teachers and yoga teacher training)

best yoga props and meditation cushion

The 5 Essential Yoga Props for Your Yoga Practice

Here are our 5 favorite yoga props and yoga tools for home yoga practice, for the yoga studio or yoga practice anywhere.

1. Yoga Strap – Perfect for Practicing Yoga Anywhere

Without question, the yoga strap is our favorite yoga prop. It’s one of the first thing we pack in our suitcases when we travel. A yoga strap is the take anywhere prop. Prana makes lovely yoga straps, but it’s hard to go wrong with a yoga strap! So find one that fits your budget–and looks aesthetically pleasing so it will be enjoyable to use. 🙂

What to look for in a yoga strap:

  • Material Construction / Fibers (We prefer 100% cotton straps)
  • Length (some people prefer short straps, others longer straps for versatility; straps often come in 6, 8, or 10 feet lengths)
  • Type of buckle (we prefer D ring – keep in mind you can connect two or more straps together, if needed)
  • Location of Origin or Manufacturer (If where a product is made is important to you–or fair trade–check out where it’s made before you buy)

2. Yoga Blocks – Perfect for Easy Yoga Pose Modification

Yoga blocks are awesome yoga props (props de yoga) for modifying yoga poses, practicing difficult postures, or working your way into more advanced asanas.

We love our Manduka Cork blocks. We also love our Hugger Mugger Cork Blocks. Cork blocks are our absolute favorite blocks. They are heavier than most blocks, and generally feel more solid and rugged than other blocks. Sure, they tend to be a little more expensive, but they hold up so well and are built to last. This can’t be said about all yoga blocks.

But blocks also come in other materials, like high density EVA foam and bamboo, so know you aren’t limited to cork.

Generally, you’ll want to purchase at least 2 blocks for your practice.

What to look for in yoga blocks:

  • Material Composition (We prefer cork, but other options include: High Density EVA Foam Blocks or even wood or bamboo yoga blocks)
  • Size (standard block sizes are around  4″ x 6″ x 9″ or 3″ x 6″ x 9″, but blocks do come in different sizes or thickness)
  • Color or Design (if looking at your blocks make you happy, you’ll be more likely to use them!)
  • Location of Origin or Manufacturer (If where a product is made is important to you–or fair trade–check out where it’s made before you buy)

3. Yoga Bolster – Perfect for Pose Modification, Restorative Yoga, Meditation

Bolsters come in different shapes. We love long round bolsters, like the Manduka Enlight. We also love firm, long rectangular bolsters for their yoga practice versatility.

What to look for in yoga bolsters:

  • Material Composition (consider outside cover fabric – for example, cotton or microfiber & inside bolster composition)
  • Size (not all bolsters are the small size)
  • Weight (some yogis prefer heavy, firm bolsters, others prefer lighter, softer, or squishier bolsters)
  • Color or Design
  • Location of Origin or Manufacturer (If where a product is made is important to you–or fair trade–check out where it’s made before you buy)

4. Yoga Blanket – Perfect Multi-Purpose Yoga Accessory

A yoga blanket is the perfect multi-use yoga tool. Yogis often use yoga blankets as a warm layer during Savasana, however, they can serve other important purposes. For example, they can double as bolsters or extra support during postures, such as when rolled up and placed under knees. They can also serve as meditation cushions.

We prefer authentic, handmade Mexican yoga blankets. They are generally extremely well made, last nearly forever, and are beautiful. They come in many different colors and patterns.

Depending on the woven fiber, some yoga blankets are softer than others. Some are “scratchier” than others, so be sure to consider the feel you’re after when you buy a blanket.

What to look for in yoga blankets:

  • Material Composition (e.g., cotton, acrylic, recycled fibers)
  • Size (most Mexican yoga blankets are about twin bed size, which means you can fold them well to suit your practice)
  • Weight (some yogis prefer heavier yoga blankets, other prefer lighter blankets)
  • Color or Design
  • Location of Origin or Manufacturer (If where a product is made is important to you–or fair trade–check out where it’s made before you buy)

5. Meditation Cushion – The Perfect Added Touch to Your Yoga Practice

A meditation cushion is a wonderful accessory to add to your yoga practice. While you can certainly get away with using a home pillow or a yoga blanket or bolster during your meditation, a dedicated meditation cushion can offer inspiration. It’s one of those pretty little things, which is also so practical and meaningful–and can make your meditation time even more beautiful. Meditation pillows and floor pillows for meditation come in different sizes, prints, colors, weights, and plushness (e.g., firm or soft).

A meditation cushion can also be extremely useful for daily meditation, especially if you meditate for extended periods of time. Seated meditation or mantra on a comfortable meditation cushion can help keep you present, in the moment.

READ MORE: If you want to integrate more meditation into your life, be sure to read How to Create a Beautiful Home Meditation Altar.

What to look for in a meditation cushion:

  • Material Composition (e.g., cotton, synthetic, wool, recycled fibers)
  • Filling Composition (e.g., what material is used to stuff or give fullness to the cushion)
  • Size (meditation cushions come in different sizes)
  • Weight (some yogis prefer dense cushions, others soft, sink into cushions)
  • Color or Design (this is totally personal preference – some meditation cushions have beautiful embellishments, like embroidery)
  • Location of Origin or Manufacturer (if where a product is made is important to you–or fair trade–check out where it’s made before you buy)

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And please consider leaving a comment below and sharing your favorite yoga prop. What is the best yoga prop in your practice? Do you think props have improved your practice?

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