Cannabis has long been associated with the yoga experience. How or why it contributes is complex. First, there are the physical and psychological benefits produced by the intake. Second, there is the atmospheric element, contributing as it does to themes and thoughts of mindfulness practices.
Many contemporary yoga purists would prohibit the use of such behavior before, during, or after their sessions. However, many think of cannabis as a necessary component, just as they do mood music, soft lighting, and scented candles. They use these elements to achieve many of the same conditions and effects as cannabis.
What’s in it for you?
It may help beginners to understand that cannabis smoke and by-products produce two major benefits:
Psychological: Certain strains will improve your focus, heighten your mood, and relieve any anxiety attached to starting a yoga program. Milder strains will soothe your nerves and reduce your fears while avoiding the power psychoactive mental experiences of more potent strains.
Physical: Well-selected strains will affect your muscular system positively. They will prevent spasms and the involuntary contractions leading to cramps. Used before exercise, cannabis will ready your body for the strains; used after sessions, it will ease any muscular aftereffects.
As The New York Times reported, “The original context of yoga was spiritual development practices to train the body and mind to self-observe and become aware of their own nature. The purposes of yoga were to cultivate discernment, awareness, self-regulation, and higher consciousness in the individual.” Modern times, however, have divided our experience of the here and now from our spiritual connection.
For most practitioners today, yoga has become an alternative to gym exercise with its promise of increased relaxation and flexibility. Many have seen value in its aerobic and strength building aspects. People practice yoga in sessions at their churches, gyms, health clubs, and just about any place they can gather indoors or outdoors.
These same sessions often dismiss or avoid the element of self-understanding and mindfulness that marked the original practice. Cannabis can restore some of that quality.
Top cannabis strains for yoga beginners (listed in reverse):
10. Super Lemon Haze
This strain is a hybrid with dominant sativa influence. The sativa adds an energetic zest to a lemony citrus experience. The effective taste and scent create a positive mood and environment for your exercise and meditation.
It can be used before exercise to set your mind and body for the stretching discipline. But it also works to relax and restore after your session. Super Lemon Haze delivers an uplifting euphoria to help you maximize your yoga and to recover after. You will feel clear-eyed and clear-headed throughout the program and relaxed in good humor when you are done.
A beginner might need some advice and monitoring with Super Lemon Haze because some novices might find themselves overwrought by sativa potency.
9. Lamb’s Bread
Lamb's Bread has a higher than usual THC percentage respecting its Jamaican roots. You only need one toke or two to set you up for hours. The cheesy taste and grassy aroma may give you away, but the emotional uplift make it worthwhile.
Novice users may seek some advice on use because the mental stimulation can be powerful. You will enjoy the energized focus which has been recommended as therapy for depression, anxiety, ADHD, migraines, and PTSD, but use may take some practice.
This legendary strain may make a first-time user feel like they belong to the cannabis culture. This is a high CBD strain which avoids the effects of high potency THC strains. You should not experience heightened anxiety, confusion, or increased heartbeat.
ACDC has a minimal THC presence and should not produce any disorienting psychoactive effects. This one is rich with incense-like smoke and forest pine tastes and aromas. Physically, it should ease you into the yoga session and increase your ability to move and stretch. Mentally, you will feel clear and focused, calm and receptive to suggestion. The same benefits should help you after the workout, especially those early ones in your overall plan.
You will not find Girl Scouts selling these cookies outside your local supermarket. But Girl Scout Cookies cannabis are just as mild and polite as its namesake. It is a balanced hybrid leaving users calm and lightly uplifted.
You will enjoy the sweet earthy experience that eases tension and pain. It leaves users functional but with a sense of openness to the yoga experience. It may be the perfect choice to enhance self-awareness and mindfulness.
The Zen is appropriately named for the meditative zone yoga hopes to reach. It may be just right for the Japanese yoga traditions and discipline. It has a low THC percentage offset by a heavy CBD count.
Its relaxing benefits stop short of sedation and couchlock ending with a clear focus and emotional uplift. Users enjoy a mild but lasting euphoria underpinned with a physical soothing and relaxation opening your mind to the experience and your body to the exercise.
As you might expect, Kryptonite is a potent THC option. Still, it reduces stress, anxiety, and pain. You will feel a body impact early and can put its long-lasting calm to your advantage. At the same time, you will feel a floating mental calm moving towards euphoria. Kryptonite will not weaken you; it will empower you towards mindfulness.
Kryptonite can take some getting used to, so you may want to try it several times to find the right phase to hit the yoga mat. It can leave some users spacey and off-center, but repeated use should give make you a master.
4. Yogi Kush
The breeders of Yogi Kush are in the wellness business. It is a hybrid of two sativa-dominant strains with the best benefits of both. This is a very potent THC strain at up to 25% with conflicting citrus and skunk effects.
Yogi Kush has been used to calm those with anxiety, ADHD, and PTSD. An anti-spasmatic, it soothes the brain and clears focus. New users should pace themselves to reach a tolerance for the potency, but it will help participants relax into and through the yoga disciplines.
3. Blue Dream
Few strains are so pleasantly named. Blue Dream is popular for its strong and rich blueberry sweet taste and aroma. It relaxes without sedation. Physically potent but psychologically calming, it may be the best choice for intense yoga exercise programs.
Fast hitting effects will leave you motivated, focused, and creative before a mellow body high sets in the leave you pain free. Used before your yoga class, it prepares you for yoga class; by the time, the session is over, the relaxation will ease your stress and workout strain.
2. Jesus OK
First time yoga students can be anxious about this new venture. They are concerned with what to expect, if they can keep up with the class, and whether they have what it takes. They worry about being judged, failing to meet goals, and meeting the mindfulness goals.
Jesus OK can take that edge away leaving you comfortable in the setting and with your social context. It relaxes your muscular systems and lifts your functional mind. Users note that it provokes thought and intensified sense experiences, a key indication of mindfulness experience.
1. CBD Shark
The ominously named CBD Shark produces the relaxation to center yourself. A well-balanced hybrid, it has a well above average 10% CBD count with sweet and fruity tastes. The high CBD percentage reduces muscular and spasmatic issues before and after exercise.
The CBD may leave you feeling hazy and wistful entering and throughout your yoga session. The equally potent THC produces the clear and creative focus to reach a mental balance where users invite self-examination and self-appraisal, a particularly good option for yoga beginners.
Keeping your mind and body open
There are multiple strains of yoga. Some are strongly connected to spiritual teaching and well-being. Some are offered as physical exercise distant from the spiritual sources. In between, there are many traditions, some more intense than others.
Some purists insist yoga should be free of chemical influences including tobacco, alcohol, and cannabis. However, many traditions also seek to layer the experience under stress-free, enlightening, and enhancing influences. Cannabis can better your yoga experience.