CBD and Yoga: Enhancing the Body and Mind
Did you know that more than 20.4 million American adults practice yoga? Another 44.4% of those who don’t practice call themselves “aspirational yogis.” But why are so many of us turning to yoga over other forms of exercise? It doesn’t burn as many calories as running, for example, so it isn’t really the best way to lose weight. And since there is no weight training involved, it’s not going to get you a bodybuilder’s physique either.
Instead, yoga is such a popular practice because does more than just get your body moving. Although many people think of yoga as a very relaxing activities, newcomers will probably find that it a very strenuous exercise that requires core strength and flexibility you do not yet possess.
As well as burning a few calories, you will find that you experience benefits for your mental health, too. Yoga can help to remove stress, anxiety, and negative feelings through the process. Furthermore, the movements may also help to alleviate symptoms of physical illnesses like chronic pain and fatigue.
Does this sound familiar to you? Cannabidiol, too, is said to help you with all these ailments. When you consider that both yoga and CBD could be beneficial for your body and mind, it’s only logical to wonder whether combining the two will unlock a whole new world of spiritual and physical wellbeing. Today, we are investigating just that; read on to find out if CBD and yoga are really a dream combination.
How Does CBD Impact Your Mind?
Cannabidiol, a compound taken from the Cannabis sativa plant, has potentially therapeutic properties for both your body and your mind. It works by impacting the endocannabinoid system (ECS), a physiological system that exists within all of us.
The role of the ECS is to maintain balance in our bodies, keeping us in a healthy condition in all possible aspects. For example, it regulates things like cell regeneration, mood, appetite, sleep and more. It can keep us feeling healthy, happy, and calm when it is functioning properly.
It is not uncommon for the ECS to falter a little. This is when problems start to occur. However, CBD can actually interact with this system and help it to stay in tip-top condition. Through this stimulation of the ECS, it can help you to stay calm and relaxed in a similar way to yoga.
For example, a 2011 study carried out by Riebe & Wotjak at the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich, it was found that endocannabinoids (the ones we create ourselves) can help to regulate stress and stress-induced anxiety. Of course, this doesn’t say much specifically about CBD, but another study in 2011, this time carried out at the University of Sao Paulo, did find that CBD was able to reduce social anxiety in a group of volunteers. This experiment saw 24 patients take a dose of either CBD or a placebo before performing a speaking test; the patients who took CBD saw a considerable improvement in their stress and anxiety levels.
In short, CBD certainly has some sort of impact on your brain and mental health, and it appears that this is wholly positive. But how could this tie into yoga?
Can Taking CBD Help Your Yoga?
Yoga is intended to center us and help us work on our wellbeing and spiritual presence. By practicing a sort of moving meditation, we are able to feel more peaceful and in control, thereby relieving stress. With CBD able to do the same thing, you might be able to get even more out of your yoga experience.
Try taking CBD approximately 30 minutes before you start your session. This is, of course, assuming that you are taking it sublingually; if you use edibles or capsules, take it even earlier than this.
As the CBD takes effect, you will experience a heightened awareness of your body and a mental clarity that you may not otherwise have had. Feeling this lightweight and carefree can only send you into an immediately positive yoga session, helping you to unwind before you even begin. Then, as the session progresses and natural endorphins are released, you are sure to finish up feeling more zen than ever!
It may also be the case that CBD can help to improve your focus. As a result, you won’t find yourself getting distracted by your cell phone buzzing while you’re in the middle of downward facing dog. You will be able to concentrate better and therefore get the most out of your session.
CBD isn’t just good for the mind, though…
What About CBD Topicals?
If you are completely new to yoga, it’s highly possible that you might over-stretch your muscles or feel tired after the first few sessions. This can cause pain and discomfort, as parts of your body might start to feel sore.
Well, you’re in luck. Many companies like us sell CBD topicals – balms, lotions and creams that are infused with CBD. As well as acting like any other moisturizer or cream, these CBD-infused topicals allow a healthy dose of cannabidiol to reach your endocannabinoid system. When you apply a dollop and massage it into your skin, the CBD penetrates the layers of your skin to reach the endocannabinoid receptors, which have an impact on pain response.
A famous 2008 study by Ethan Russo concluded that CBD may be able to reduce inflammation and therefore alleviate the symptoms of pain. Through this mechanism, CBD may have the potential to reduce the muscular pain you experience as a result of doing yoga.
Although you could take other forms of CBD, it could be very handy to invest in a CBD topical for muscular pains. Some companies even sell massage oils or ointments that can be massaged into the skin, which gives the added benefit of a soothing massage after physical exertion.
If you have been trying out yoga and have experienced any pain as a result, you should really take a look into a topical CBD treatment.
Final Thoughts on CBD and Yoga
Both CBD and yoga are trends that are steadily growing in popularity. As people become more health conscious – especially of their mental wellbeing – these things are only set to rise in the future.
It turns out that, in this case at least, you can’t have too much of a good thing. By combining CBD and yoga, you may be able to unlock a level of mental and physical wellbeing that you have never experienced before. Try using CBD oil or capsules before your yoga session, and perhaps add in a CBD topical to your regime if you experience any muscular pain.
If you have tried combining the two before, let us know in the comments how it has worked for you.