You don't have your bolster to help you in the practice of yoga yet? Yogi confirmed or beginner, a yoga bolster is the support accessory that will help you get the most out of your yoga session. It will be very comfortable for you to perform and deepen without hurting yourself in all the opening and stretching postures. To learn how to choose your bolster and how to use it, follow the guide!
What is a bolster?
This yoga accessory is a cushion in the shape of a bolster. It is a comfortable and very useful support tool that will quickly become indispensable during your yoga sessions. Firm and flexible, it comes in a cylindrical, oval or rectangular shape. Each shape has its own particularities, but the goal is the same for all of them: to allow everyone, experienced yogis or beginners, to enjoy the benefits of yoga to the fullest. Quite simply.
Bolsters are "cushions" for yoga and therapeutic practices that allow the practitioner to do opening and stretching postures. First and foremost, you must always listen to your body and its limits. They are generally used at the end of the session, during relaxation exercises, to completely relax muscles and joints, at any age.
In practices such as prenatal yoga, for example, they can be used throughout the session. Because the body is completely relaxed thanks to the bolster, work and concentration on breathing is facilitated. This accessory is even more effective at the end of the day, to release all accumulated tensions.
What is a yoga bolster for?
The yoga bolster cushion provides support for a more comfortable and relaxing practice. Here are the benefits of this accessory:
• it provides maximum relaxation by targeting certain parts of the body ;
• it deepens the opening postures of the heart, shoulders and hips;
• It creates a space for intervertebral decompression;
• it supports the head, neck or lumbar vertebrae to preserve your joints;
• it is a support adapted to pregnant women;
• It improves posture and spinal alignment;
• it helps concentration by facilitating relaxation and breathing;
• it contributes to the comfort for a sitting, kneeling or lying posture;
• it conforms pleasantly to the shape of the body;
• it allows an adequate posture;
• it secures the asana;
• it can be used as a meditation cushion.
How to choose your Yoga Bolster?
Your bolster should be soft and firm and of a volume corresponding to your height and weight. To be in tune with the spirit of yoga and reduce the negative impact on the environment, choose an eco-friendly bolster.
The cylindrical bolster exists in two sizes: the standard bolster and the mini bolster, more suitable as cervical or knee support. The oval bolster, lower than the traditional bolster, is stable enough to also serve as a meditation support.
The rectangular bolster also comes in two sizes. It has the advantage of being able to be used, like the brick, via its two dimensions: width and height. Choose a size of yoga bolster according to your morphology, your flexibility and the type of posture you practice. To facilitate transportation, some models are equipped with a strap.
In the shops you will find the cylindrical or rectangular yoga bolster. The cylindrical cushion is also called yoga bolster because of its shape. It is the most known by yogis to easily perform opening, stretching or restorative postures. For example, you can place it under your legs during the Savasana position or along your spine. The advantage is that it adapts very well to the shape of your body.
The rectangular yoga bolster is less known, but how useful! Indeed, this one can be used on the 2 slices (laid flat or on the side) according to your flexibility or the type of posture. It can even be used as a meditation cushion at the end of a yoga session. A practical yoga object, because 2 in 1!
There are 2 sizes of yoga bolster: the mini and the standard. The smaller one fits under your neck without bothering you. Why use it? Simply because at the nape of the neck, you accumulate tension and using the small yoga bolster helps to relax this area. As for the standard yoga bolster (63 x 23 cm or 69 x 23 cm), it slides along your spine as a support. Finally, the rectangular bolster comes in 2 sizes: 66 cm long x 17 cm wide x 7 cm high or 63 cm long x 33 cm wide x 14 cm high. In general, the size of your yoga bolster is chosen according to your size, your flexibility and the posture performed.
You can choose between polyester or cotton. There are a lot of yoga accessories made of organic and organically grown cotton, which are healthier and more ethical. In any case, choose a fabric that is resistant and pleasant to the touch. To facilitate the maintenance of your yoga cushion, consider opting for a removable cover.
These yoga pillows are stuffed with kapok, buckwheat or spelt seeds. Filled with seeds, your yogic pillow is more ergonomic and stable, while kapok combines softness and density. Preferably choose a model with an opening for access to the padding. This will allow you to remove or add padding to adjust firmness according to your weight or morphology. Another advantage is that your posture cushion will keep its shape for many years.
You will find patterned or plain patterns. In yogic philosophy, colors are important because they influence our emotions. You can choose your yoga bolster by thinking about its chromatic vibration. Red, the chakra of rootedness, is a symbol of strength. Orange, sacred chakra, symbolizes dynamism and creativity. Yellow, solar plexus chakra, expresses optimism. Green is associated with the heart chakra and spreads vitality and compassion. Turquoise, throat chakra, is related to communication and oral expression. Indigo evokes the clairvoyance of the third eye and is synonymous with serenity. Purple, the crown chakra, opens to intuition and universal understanding.
Examples of how to use your bolster
The Sit Clamp posture is a stretch of the back of the body where your yoga support will have its full place. Place it along your legs and place your bust on it. Your back will be supported with a good opening of the back of your ribs.
For the relaxation posture, Savasana, the bolster under the knees relaxes the lumbar vertebrae and facilitates a total relaxation.
For the butterfly posture, sit with your back to your yoga object, soles of your feet together, and lie down on your bolster which, all along your back and your head, opens your chest and fluidifies your breathing ;
the half candle is done by lying down with your feet in the air, legs along a wall. It is a posture of intense relaxation that regenerates and relaxes the whole body. To further accentuate this effect, place your support accessory under the pelvis.