Cannabis is listed in the Vedas, the ancient Hindu scriptures, as one of five sacred plants: an important source of happiness, joy and liberation gifted to humanity to release stress and anxiety and eliminate fear. For centuries, yoga practitioners have combined cannabis consumption into their yoga flow to unlock new levels of peace and pleasure, and now that cannabis is widely available and generally destigmatized, yogis are bringing the good green herb back to the mat.
If you are interested in getting high and doing yoga, here are a few tips to make your practice as safe and productive as possible:
Set Expectations and Intentions
Before you roll out your mat — and especially before you take your first hit of weed — you need to think critically about what you hope to accomplish with your high yoga practice. Yoga is one of the most holistic forms of exercise because practices can help you build strength and flexibility in almost every aspect of your being: your physical body, your emotions, your spirituality and more. Some yoga practices emphasize only one of these aspects; other practices strike a balance amongst some or all of them. Similarly, cannabis consumption can help develop some component of your yoga session — or it can hinder it.
Setting your expectations and intentions for your yoga practice will ensure you find satisfaction and fulfillment from being high and being on your mat. You can have different goals for each stoner yoga session, but you should know ahead of time what you hope to achieve, so you can make the appropriate accommodations — like selecting the right cannabis strain and the right yoga poses.
Choose the Right Strain
Not every cannabis plant produces the same type of high. Thanks to millennia of cultivation, cannabis enthusiasts have managed to create hundreds of different strains, which offer wildly different effects to users. Generally, yoga practitioners want strains that provide focus and enhance the mind-body connection without reducing motivation or impacting mobility. Then again, you might not mind heavy limbs if you are focusing your practice on flexing your spirituality or deepening your relaxation.
You can talk to budtenders at your local Florida dispensaries to find the strains in your area that manifest your desired effects, but almost regardless of where you live, you should be able to find the following yoga-rific strains on offer:
- GSC: Originally called Girl Scout Cookies, this strain is notorious for its soothing, euphoric high.
- ACDC: A strain with notoriously high CBD-to-THC ratio, ACDC provides deep body relaxation without an intense head high.
- Jack the Ripper: This strain has a limited body high and intense energizing effects, which are perfect for an active practice on the mat.
- Lavender: This indica is helpful if you are trying to shift your gaze inward during your yoga session for more spiritual or emotional growth.
Even if you have been practicing yoga for years, your body and mind won’t behave as you expect while you are high. Thus, it is best to begin your stoner yoga sessions with some simpler poses, which will help you recognize and become accustomed to the new sensations inspired by weed. Some of the best poses for pot practice include:
- Tadasana, Standing Mountain Pose
- Urdhva Hastasana, Upward Salute
- Uttanasana, Standing Forward Fold
- Adho Mukha Svanasana, Downward-facing Dog Pose
- Chaturanga Dandasana, Four-limbed Staff Pose
- Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, Upward-facing Dog Pose
- Balasana, Child’s Resting Pose
If you feel confident and in control of your limbs — not off-balance or unexpectedly heavy — you can consider venturing into a few more difficult poses. Some excellent options to open up your body and mind include:
- Ashta Chandrasana, Crescent Lunge
- Garudasana, Eagle Pose
- Eka Pada Rajakapotasana, Pigeon Pose
- Utkata Konasana, Goddess Pose
You can move through these poses at your leisure, following your whim and your breath. If you appreciate more guidance during your practice, you can find beginner-level yoga flows on YouTube or through fitness apps. You might also be able to find 420-friendly yoga classes in your area, depending on the strength of your surrounding yoga community.
Whenever you combine cannabis and physical activity, you need to be careful with how you dose. Getting too high will be dangerous for a few reasons: It could reduce your motivation to finish your session; it could impact your coordination, increasing your risk for injury; or it could lead to negative effects, like nausea, drowsiness or anxiety. Administering cannabis oils under the tongue can help you maintain a low, steady level of THC and CBD throughout your practice without any risk of overdose.
Weed is an ancient sacred herb, so it makes sense that it pairs well with an ancient, sacred practice like yoga. By taking it slow and simple — with both pot and poses — you should see success in your stoner yoga session.