There are now millions of people getting involved in yoga as a means to relax and soothe their minds. And if you’re looking for new ways to elevate the practice of yoga, then including cannabis in your sessions might just be the answer you’re looking for.
There is nothing new about cannabis yoga. Indian yogis use the relaxing effects of cannabis in enhancing their spiritual practices. Ancient Hindu literature recognize cannabis as one of the five sacred herbs that mankind can use to alleviate anxiety.
Now, cannabis yoga is getting introduced into modern society. Dee Dussault paired cannabis with yoga in an effort to pioneer a movement for the contemporary times. Dussault explains, “Cannabis enhanced yoga is not about accomplishing poses. It’s about feeling our bodies and becoming more relaxed and present”.
Dussault started with the modern version of cannabis yoga by microdosing with cannabis and cannabidiol. Her aim was to establish the perfect balance for her yoga practice. She found out that cannabis can provide psychological and spiritual benefits. The substance also improved her sense of clarity and feeling of bliss during times of meditation.
In 2009, she initiated “ganja yoga” classes right in her home. Over the years, her followers grew that she now has a San Francisco-based private practice. Every week, she holds two public classes. Dee Dussault is also the author of the book “Ganja Yoga”.
Dussault and other cannabis yogis say that the combination of yoga and cannabis has greatly elevated their mindfulness. While the claim is anecdotal, it does merit looking into how such combination can lead to the perfect practice.
Benefits of Yoga
While Dussault’s claims are anecdotal, the benefits of yoga aren’t. A study in 2011 posited that yoga can improve muscle strength and flexibility. Yoga can also enhance cardiovascular and pulmonary functions while reducing stress, depression, and anxiety. These can lead to an improvement in the overall quality of life.
In 2012, a study also confirmed that yoga is effective in improving one’s health. The same research suggested that yoga can be beneficial in the prevention and management of certain health conditions.
A 2018 research indicated that yoga can also provide mental health benefits. It can regulate the activities of the hypothalamus, pituitary gland, and the adrenal glands. At the same time, yoga can also have a regulatory effect on the sympathetic nervous system. This can lead to the alleviation of anxiety, the management of depression, and the reduction of exaggerated stress responses.
Benefits of Cannabis Yoga
Yoga can provide a host of health benefits. But these are inherent in the practice of yoga only. The question is how cannabis can enhance the practice of yoga?
One of the effects of yoga is the activation of certain areas of the brain responsible for relaxation. Cannabis can provide the same effect.
There is anecdotal evidence that points to the ability of cannabis yoga to provide greater focus on how the body and muscles stretch. Most folks attribute this to the capability of cannabis to calm the mind.
Researches indicate that cannabinoids can alleviate anxiety. This can lead to an improvement in one’s focus while also enhancing the relaxing effects of yoga.
Studies also show that cannabidiol can soothe muscle tension and reduce the intensity of chronic pain. In addition to its relaxing effects, CBD can also empower yogis to manage their pain experiences prior to practicing yoga.
Most of us should be mindful of being present in any life experience. Our contemporary lives have made us to be always looking forward and not living in the present or in the “now”.
Yoga is one of those practices that focus more on breathing and how the body moves. It allows us to establish a central focus while also disregarding unnecessary thoughts.
Practitioners of cannabis yoga say that having a central focus and blocking out mind chatter can help negate the tendency of individuals to self-judge. It also eliminates the incessant need to perfect a particular yoga posture. These can deepen one’s engagement in the practice of yoga.
Cannabis has the ability to enhance these feelings because of its power to calm the mind. It also helps in bringing greater focus to the different bodily sensations. Dee Dussault said it herself that cannabis yogis often have more internalized and deeper experience in their practice of yoga.
Studies show that the practice of yoga can provide many benefits for the body, mind, and soul. It can improve blood circulation and prevent diseases. Yoga can also help individuals to become more mindful and have more positive thought patterns.
When you add cannabis to the practice of yoga, it is possible to enjoy greater health benefits. The calming effects of cannabis can promote deeper relaxation during the practice of yoga. Cannabis can also help clear the mind and improve your focus on different yoga postures.
In addition to improved relaxation, cannabis can also deepen one’s engagement in the practice of yoga. Cannabis can reduce mental chatter. This can also lead to more internalized and more positive yoga experience while also reducing the tendency for self-judgment.
It is true that there is no scientific evidence yet to support the benefits of cannabis yoga. Nevertheless, ganja yogis say that cannabis yoga can still help individuals deepen their practice of yoga as well as their presence.