When you think of cannabis, the first thing that comes to mind usually isn’t exercise. No, in the old days smoking weed was synonymous with laziness and apathy and the idea of doing physical activity was complete fantasy. However, with the legalization of recreational marijuana, cannabis lovers are coming out of the closet and smashing stereotypes of the “spaced out, lazy stoner.” Using cannabis as part of your exercise routine is case in point.
As a long-time yogi and cannabis lover, I’m interested in how cannabis can benefit my yoga practice. For the past year, I’ve been experimenting with using cannabis to enhance my practice and have found it beneficial in many ways. Depending on the strain and how I’m using it, cannabis provides focus, energy, stamina, muscle relaxation, and pain relief. All of which are needed during an intense workout.
Cannabis is known for it’s focusing effects. This can help you stay on task and focus on your workout. I find that using cannabis during yoga helps me stay focused on my alignment in each posture. It also helps me to stay present in the moment, and to stay in challenging pose when I’d rather come out of it.
Energy & stamina
Sativa dominant strains are known for providing energy and can increase your stamina. A boost of energy before a workout helps me get through class. Sativa dominant strains are great for high-energy or intense styles of yoga like Bikram or Power.
On the flip side, Indica dominant strains are known for stress relief and relaxation effects. In certain forms of yoga, relaxation is the goal and this is where Indica’s shine. I love using Indica strains during yin and restorative classes. It helps quiet my mind and allows me to deeply relax and hold the poses.
Muscle relaxation & pain relief
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a compound found in cannabis which helps with muscle relaxation and pain relief, without any psychoactive effects. During yoga, this is beneficial because it’s pain relieving effects help me stretch deeper and allows me to go further into poses.
My picks for using cannabis to enhance Yoga
If you’re interested in using cannabis to enhance your practice, here are some of my favorite ways to use cannabis with yoga.
CBD edibles are my favorite enhancement to my yoga practice. The muscle relaxation allows me to go deeper into poses and pain relief allows me to do poses where the pain is too acute otherwise. My body always feels amazingly lose and flexible after a CBD yoga class.
I take 5mg of CBD 30 – 45 minutes prior to class to allow it time to kick in and the effects last throughout class. My product pick is the Ginger Moxy Mints, or a CBD dark chocolate. Before using CBD during your workout, it’s best to try it out first so you know how you will react and what dosage work for you.
CBD dominant strains
In addition to a CBD edible, I enjoy smoking a CDB dominant strain, or a CBD mixed with sativa before class. I like the double kick of CBD and I particularly like the focusing effects from CBD without getting too high. Throw a little sativa in there for some energy and class is off to a great start.
For this I love the Fairwinds CBD cartridges like the 1:1 CBD or the Harle-Tsu. For flower, I love the CBD effects combined with mild psychoactive effects of Frida by Raven Grass.
Again be sure you know how a particular strain will affect you before using it during a workout. I find some sativa strains make me dizzy, so its best to know this ahead of time.