I recently came back from my travels in India where I completed my 200-Hours at Vinyasa Yoga School. As many schools in India, they all run off the same kind of system in terms of class schedules, location, food etc. When I read about my course previous to going……. Ok, I lied I didn’t really read that much into it because I was far too excited to be training in India with all the cows, monkeys and wise old Indian people. The only problem was I didn’t pack for the occasion which sucked because If I had read about the course schedule and prepared just that little bit more I would not have ended up where I am today. Very, very broke.
Ok so for each school they have a schedule on how they run the day, for example, my timetable looked a bit like this;
- 5:30AM – Snack
- 6:00am – Vinyasa Flow
- 7:15am – Vinyasa Flow
- (Yes we had two very sweaty and heated sessions)
- 9:15am – Pranayama
- 10:15am – Breakfast
The rest is all pretty much theory and then a two-hour Hatha class in the evening.
Now I shall give you an idea on what I packed:
- 2x yoga pants
- 3x vest
- 1x t-shirt
- 3x sports bra
- small medicine kit – plasters, diarrhea tablets, burn patches, hydration sachets.
The main problem with this list is that is it way too small and underpacked especially for an intense training course, it may not look like it as being a traveler you learn to recycle your clothes all the time, wearing something until it gets ruined or extremely dirty which could be weeks on end is still appropriate however this is not the case.
I found that I’m probably like that small percentage of people who either overpack or under a pack. I can honestly say that I am a poor excuse when it comes to this part of traveling, I am of course the Bridget Jones of packing. Now because of this endeavor, I have created a few points in which you should remember as you pack your life away to go and do the best thing you will ever do.
- Always pack more Leggings. The training is intense, you sweat more than you drink which means after one class your dripping wet and if you’re like me, you will only have one pair to serve your next class however then you have to wear sweaty pants 6 days in a row which isn’t the best for hygiene purposes or in general because you just end up smelling like a wet fish.
2. Always bring comfortable clothing for the breaks and theory classes. Very similar to the point above, no one wants to be sitting down for hours in sweating gym gear especially if the temperatures sometimes soar up into the 40’s and In India, there is a power cut every few hours so the aircon isn’t reliable. Just picture a roasted chicken, that would be you.
3. If you’re going to shop for all of your gear when your there which a few of my friends did, just remember there aren’t many Yoga shops in Rishikesh so the option for bright colorful leggings isn’t there. I remember on the day before we started Maysem and I ventured around the local stalls and shops until our feet couldn’t take anymore looking for decent yoga wear which was if you didn’t already guess was unsuccessful. If you work better with baggy pants and tops that stretch Rishikesh is your place, otherwise, bring your own.
4. If you’re prone to washing your hair 4x a week then sweating every day isn’t going to be great for your luscious locks. I found this organic shampoo which provided me wonders throughout my training, I managed to wash my hair twice a week and it turned out better than what I was using at home. This is an option though as everyone knows that shampoos are like daggers for your hair so treat it kindly whilst your away. There are so many organic shops there, it’s like paradise for your local hairdresser.
5. Everyone gets sick in India whether that be toilet troubles, stomach infections, bites. You name it, someone will have it. I found that when I got bitten it got infected from walking around in the dusk and the dirt. Always bring a medical kit with you because no matter how much you think you won’t use it, you probably will. Lucky for me Maysem had packed the whole of Boots into her bag so I was ok but my foot could have ended pretty badly otherwise as the hospitals are a joke over there and there’s no such thing really as a chemist.
6. Bring a water bottle. I found that the rubbish in India is outrageous and the fact I was contributing to it with buying plastic bottles did not help the situation. Another one of my great qualities is I am attracted to objects that I don’t really need but I have to have it anyway, for example, the copper bottles everyone was selling over there, they may look awesome and hipster but they are extremely bad for your health because as I found out they aren’t real copper and you are in fact just swallowing metallic compounds into your body which could result in toxic measures. Be aware of nature and stay healthy, that is the main focus of this point.
Yoga in India is an experience you won’t ever forget so don’t stress about the little things, but just know that preparation save you a whole lot of time, money and effort so don’t be like me, pack wisely and have a great time 🙂