Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Aromatherapy Recipes to Enhance Your Yoga Practice

by Andrea Butje

Owner/Instructor at Aromahead Institute

Yoga and aromatherapy share a common goal–that of naturally, gently, restoring a person’s balance and health. Maybe that’s why they have a long history of working together.
Essential oils affect us quickly, and they affect us deeply. Essential oils can be such powerful tools, especially in conjunction with yoga, as we connect with our bodies in deep, holistic, strengthening ways.
Preparing for Your Practice
Some yoga studios don’t allow the use of aromatherapy during yoga classes. Scents can linger in a space after the class is over, and what one person finds soothing, another may find irritating–especially if they have an allergy, or a negative memory associated with the aroma.
But some studios do make use of aromatherapy, and you can use it in your personal practice, too.
To cleanse your space on a broad scale, diffuse essential oils in a diffuser or use a room spray. This is a great way to clear the energy. If you teach a class, this can put your students–and yourself–in a yogic state of mind right when they walk in. Using the right essential oils can even cleanse the air. Anti-microbial oils, like eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus), lavender (Lavandula angustifolia), or the wonderfully bright citruses, actually destroy airborne germs when they’re diffused or sprayed throughout the space. This can be really helpful for preventing the spread of infection during cold and flu season.
If you’re running a studio, it’s also a good idea to use aromatherapy and essential oils in the bathroom. They cut through funky smells, and keep the space neat and clean without resorting to toxic chemicals. Lemon (Citrus limon), Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) and Juniper Berry (Juniperus communis) are a few essential oils that can really disinfect surfaces and make a room smell amazing.
Here are 2 great recipes you can spray in the room both before and after your session:
Calm and Clean10 drops Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
10 drops Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)
1 oz. of water in spray bottle
Uplift and Clean5 drops Orange (Citrus sinensis)
5 drops Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis ct. camphor)
5 drops  Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
1 oz. of water in spray bottle
A popular time to use aromatherapy is when you’re closing your practice, during shavasana. You can spray a blend around your mat before you lay back to relax.
This is a great way to close your practice. The feel and scent of the oils lingers on your skin, helping you maintain that yogic glow as you go back into the world.
Here’s a great recipe to try as you close your session:
Yogic Glow5 drops Black Spruce (Picea mariana)
5 drops Mandarin (Citrus reticulata)
10 drops Frankincense (Boswellia carterii)
1 oz. of water in spray bottle
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