A new craze is becoming more popular across America: yoga classes that incorporate cannabinoids, commonly known as CBD, into their practice. On their own, CBD and yoga each have unique powers to help reduce stress and anxiety. However, when you combine these two ancient remedies, you can get the perfect anti-stress toolkit.
CBD, Yoga, and How One Stretches the Other
Actually, using CBD or yoga for relaxation isn’t a new concept. Cannabis is referred to in some of the earliest Hindu spiritual texts (Vedas) as one of five sacred plants. It is said to have a guardian angel living in its leaves and is a good source of happiness. Written around 1200 BCE, these texts talk about giving cannabis to people in order to help reduce their worry and fear.
Hindus also brought us the spiritual discipline of yoga around 1500 BCE. These same Hindu texts first use and define the word yoga, while groups in India had been practicing the spiritual discipline of yoga for some time. The word yoga literally means “union,” and there are many interpretations and paths for people who do it. At the center of all of it is the idea of calming ego-centric feelings- almost more focused on one’s mind than their body.
So, it’s no surprise that yoga studios are starting to pick up on this ancient connection between yoga and CBD, as both are increasing in popularity year over year. According to global statistics, the number of Americans doing yoga is predicted to rise to 55 million people by 2020. In 2018, the President signed the Farm Bill, essentially legalizing CBD at the federal level. A 2019 Cowen and Company consumer survey showed that nearly 7% of Americans are already using CBD, with those numbers on the rise.
Why CBD Improves Yoga
In 1992, researchers discovered the human body’s endocannabinoid system. They found that people come with their own cannabinoid receptors, which affect both the immune and nervous systems. Cannabinoids are produced by the body and are even in mothers’ breast milk. Cannabinoid receptors are actually activated naturally through meditation, which makes CBD the perfect complement to yoga.
The positive effects of CBD are based in science. Natural healing plants like cannabis (but also rosemary, lemongrass, thyme, pine, lavender, basil, and cloves), as well as a lot of essential oils and insects, have terpenes, which are organic compounds with many helpful properties. In the matter of complementing yoga sessions, full spectrum CBD oil has high concentrations of terpenes like Linalool, Myrcene, and Pinene which all have their own medicinal benefits.
Not everyone is an ideal candidate for yoga or CBD. It’s important to check with a doctor before starting any new physical activity or medicinal substance. Since CBD works as a blood thinner, it could interfere with existing medical conditions or negatively interact with certain medications.
Bringing Your Mind and Body Together
Between the success of CBD and yoga in the history of man and the current increase in the use of both, now is a great time to try combining them. Both natural elements of calm are amazing separately, but more powerful together. Experts recommend taking sublingual CBD at least 30 minutes prior to a yoga session. If it’s in capsule or edible form, the yogi would need to ingest it much earlier than that to enjoy the possible sensory enhancing properties during their session. Taking CBD after class may also help soothe over-stretched muscles or injuries.