Essential oils can have a variety of wonderful affects, both physiologically and on your state of mind. One of the ways I love to use essential oils is during yoga practice. As you take the deep, cleansing breaths in – whether you are energising yourself first thing in the morning or winding down after a busy day – adding fragrance is a wonderful way to add another dimension to your practice.
Incense is the traditional means of scenting the practice room, however why not switch to diffusing a calming, centring essential oil such as Lavender or Ylang Ylang. Alternatively, to purify the air choose a more energising oil such as Lemon or Grapefruit.
Orange, Lemon and Cinnamon (careful with this one, as a hot oil it needs to be heavily diluted if it is going anywhere near skin) are also great antibacterial agents which, if diluted and sprayed – make a wonderfully fragrant yoga mat cleaner.
If you’ve had a particularly powerful practice, why not massage stretched-out muscles with a carrier oil into which you’ve added a few drops of Rosemary, Wintergreen or Helichrysum.
Many oils are also great to rub (with appropriate dilution) into pulse points before you start your practice so you can breath in their amazing fragrance and take full advantage of their healing properties.
For an energising morning practice, designed to get my blood flowing and set me up for the day I like to diffuse Wild Orange and Peppermint.
For an uplifting practice I like to use Bergamot and Grapefruit.
For a relaxing practice at the end of the day I like to use Ylang Ylang and Frankincense.
For a meditative practice, I like to use Patchouli and Clary Sage.