The fundamental principle to keep in mind regarding the most suitable clothes for practicing yoga is comfort. Therefore, any clothing that you choose for yoga practice should always be comfortable instead of fashion and trends. The clothes you wear should allow you move freely, bend forward, backward, stay a few minutes in relaxation, sit with crossed legs, lift your arms, bend your legs and everything else you are required to do in a yoga class. Yoga is not governed under the principles of fashion, but under those of a philosophical tradition that interests you can carry out your practice in the best way possible. What is sought is to heal and revitalize the body, calm the mind and expand the spirit with a very different criteria that governs the world today.
As yoga is an ancient discipline that has a spiritual background, it is very important to note that it has a number of foundations that we must respect in our dress and one of them is cleaning. Yoga teaches us that internal and external cleaning are essential. Our body must be detoxified to be healthy and strong and our minds must be at least contaminated as possible from external stimuli, thoughts and negative energies, thus our clothes should follow the same principles.
Taking care of our clothing is symbolical to take care of ourselves, respect each other and treat each other with love and it involves the principles of bhakti (devotion) and ahimsa, extending love and compassion. It also gives a sublime to the practical character, because if we wear nice clothes in good condition and we are preparing symbolically to attune our spirit, we are reminding ourselves that this practice of yoga is a way to love and connect with something larger.
One of the ways of yoga is Bhakti yoga, which is about devotion. You do not have to have a religious nature but you should involve an attitude of dedication, commitment, gratitude and love. Some people give their practice a sacred character, so for example, wear white and choose certain colors or symbols to include spiritual vibrations.
We must not forget that yoga is a meditative and profound practice. Even though we say it is desirable that the clothes are in good condition, this does not mean anything new or fashionable, because simplicity is the central philosophy to yoga. Unlike other areas where the body, which can be something working for frivolous or pretentious, yoga is the opposite, a space where clothing must be functional and must honor practice with modesty and respect. Therefore, it is best to avoid ostentation. If you want, you can also give our clothes a little meaning.
Yoga involves being conscious in every aspect of our life and food is part of it. Therefore, diet plays a key role for tradition. What we eat determines the nutrients brought into our body, energy and vitality of our being, the purity of our material body, and also the purity of our mind and spirit. As yoga transforms the relationship we have with the body, we begin to see it as a vehicle that has been given us to develop holistically.
The food becomes a ritual where we give thanks for the food we receive from nature as well as essential to our wellbeing. It should also be a fully conscious act, which begins in the selection of foods that make us good to ourselves and the environment, which involves a healthy and loving preparation, and that eating well is a special moment. It is an opportunity to demonstrate devotion to the wonders of life, because it is what we offer to our body for renewal and fully operational.
Yogi food is simple, balanced, vegetarian and nutritious. It favors foods that give us vital energy and inner peace. Its essential foods are fruits, vegetables, grains, cereals, seeds, legumes and dairy products. They should be fresh food, grown in the most natural way possible, easy to digest with high nutritional value. Your preparation should be simple to preserve their nutrients and light to aid digestion. Overcooking the food, kills the nutrients.
The diet is part of the yogic tradition and facilitates and promotes inner peace and a keen intellect. We call it sattvic foods. The lifestyle of the yogis always seek a balance, which is satvas. There are three types of energy in the universe as rajas (movement stimulation), satvas (purity and balance) and Tamas (inertia). So we always give us foods for energy (prana) which nourish us and facilitate calmness and mental clarity, and promote the health of physical body.
When we refer to ‘natural foods’, we mean raw and cultivated in a way that today can be called organic. It means the food should come from a healthy and fertile soil with a minimum of toxic elements in such as pesticides. It is this respect for life and the earth, and other reasons such as its effect on our health, mind and emotions. The diet of yogis is vegetarian. However, with the industrialization of the production of milk, it should have a critical attitude towards dairy we consume.
The foods in the tradition of yoga and Ayurveda are conceived as a medicine. We must carefully choose what we put in our body to function as a kind of medicine to bring us the balance that everyone needs.
Healthy and nutritious foods help us cleanse the body because they are easy to digest and are essential to prevent diseases. The disease occurs because there is a blockage in our subtle bodies i.e. nadis, chakras, mind and emotions, or because they have not eliminated toxins properly. Nutrition is so important for yoga because it promotes health and inner balance we need to be full and develop spiritually.