CBD: It’s one of those things that abruptly exploded in popularity, with capsules, tinctures, oils, and edibles popping up online and in brick-and-mortar storefronts. The world can’t stop talking about CBD, and though it might seem like a buzzword, it’s so much more than that — the benefits of CBD are deeply rooted in science and herbal healing.
The tremendous suite of benefits that CBD offers are uniquely powerful for yogis: stress relief, anxiety reduction, focus and concentration, and relaxation can deepen and improve your yoga practice.
We’re diving deep into the benefits of CBD for yoga, but first, a quick primer on this do-all supplement: CBD stands for cannabidiol, a chemical compound that comes from the cannabis plant. It’s probably the most well-known compound in the cannabinoid family, second only to delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC (the cannabinoid that gets you “high,” and that of which you’ll find less than 0.3% in all legal products - like Drishti CBD Arogya CBD Oil...shameless plug!)
Why CBD and yoga?
Most of us spend our days with low-grade anxiety humming as background noise. It’s like TV static — always there, but hidden when we tune into the right channel. This constant anxiety is often the result of overbooking and over-obligating ourselves. We all have too much to do, all the time,so we turn to yoga to wind down, recenter, and rejuvenate. Yoga is the TV channel that masks the static.
But yoga — while certainly effective at reducing stress — doesn’t have to be the only anti-anxiety tool under your belt. CBD shares many of yoga’s powerful benefits on mind and body. CBD is a natural fit for gentle, restorative types of yoga, but CBD can also help you feel your best during high-tempo, more intense classes.
Truly, pairing yoga and CBD might be the best idea you’ve ever had.
Benefits of using CBD with yoga
CBD is distinctively restorative, making it the perfect supplement to pair with yoga. It can help with physical discomfort, emotional distress, lack of focus, and whole-body tension — it’s only natural to allow CBD to help you wholly, happily sink into a yoga flow.
CBD works primarily by acting on your endocannabinoid system, a regulatory system that shuttles important messages throughout your body. When you take CBD, it interacts with this endocannabinoid system, encouraging your body to produce more of its own natural endocannabinoids. These helpful compounds promote relaxation, pain relief, and other benefits.
Stress relief and anxiety reduction
Yoga is one of the top practices for reducing stress, relieving anxiety, and improving mindfulness — as backed by decades of scientific research. By adding CBD into the mix, you can make the benefits twofold.
Like yoga, CBD’s effects on stress and anxiety are grounded in science. Studies show that CBD can reduce a number of different types of anxiety and has a “clear anti-stress effect” in single doses or when taken repeatedly.
Part of CBD’s role in reducing stress and anxiety has to do with terpenes, the compounds responsible for the aroma of cannabis plants. Most plants produce some sort of terpenes: Think of pine, lavender, and chamomile. Terpenes are the reason they smell so good (or bad, depending on your preferences), but terpenes are also the reason that the oils of these plants make you feel centered and relaxed.
CBD has particularly high concentrations of terpenes (as evidenced by the strong aroma of cannabis plants) — think of it as an ingested form of aromatherapy to complement your yoga practice.
Reduce muscle tension and soreness
Have you ever found yourself lying in savasana at the end of a yoga class, trying your hardest to remain still, but itching to jump off of your yoga mat and tend to a sore muscle that keeps tensing up? Yeah, that’s no fun way to spend what’s supposed to be the most relaxing part of a yoga class.
The anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties of CBD can further promote relaxation by soothing tight muscles and easing achy joints. Studies show that CBD can decrease bodily inflammation when taken orally and applied topically, so popping a CBD capsule before yoga class can make shimmying into pigeon pose more “ah, nice stretch” and less “oh no, is my hip going to pop?”.
While it’s possible to ease sore muscles with just one dose of CBD, you’ll get the experience optimal benefits by taking CBD regularly, so inflammation (and restlessness during savasana) is always kept at bay.
Whole-body relaxation and focus
Finally, CBD can enhance the anti-stress and anti-anxiety benefits of your yoga practice by helping you focus and concentrate during your flow. Yogis know that there’s nothing quite like a good flow to take your mind off of things, and CBD can help you truly drown out the day’s stressors.
Many yogis struggle with mindfulness during class despite that being a major intention of yoga as a practice. The relaxing properties of CBD help many people cultivate a deep focus, an important part of keeping stress levels low and tuning out low-grade anxiety.
This area of research is relatively new, but so far, scientists have found that CBD is effective in helping people with ADHD stay on-task — so it’s no stretch that it can help the average person ignore distractions and reel straying thoughts back in.
Deepen your yoga practice with CBD
Put it all together — reduced stress, improved focus, relief from muscle pain — and CBD is the ultimate supplement for active, busy yogis who need a little nudge to get the most out of their yoga practice.
If you’re a yogi that struggles with stress or anxiety, CBD can help you:
- Reel in stray thoughts during yoga class
- Alleviate distracting muscle pain and tightness
- Increase mindfulness, focus, and concentration
- Let go of the day’s stressors
- Be fully present during your yoga flow
CBD and yoga share a truly impressive collection of benefits, and pairing them simply brings out the best in each one. For the perfect pairing, try:
- Ananda CBD 250mg Tincture for moderate relief
- Prana CBD Relief Balm for aches after class
- Arogya Multivitamin for daily wellbeing
Post Crafted By: Ruby LaBrusciano-Carris
Ruby is a yoga teacher, avid hiker, and freelance marketing and brand strategist based out of Portland, OR. When she’s not working on her laptop in one of Portland’s numerous coffee shops, you can expect to find her on the mountains, on her yoga mat, or scheming on a new adventure.
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