There’s nothing quite like yoga after consuming cannabis to leave you feeling relaxed, balanced and synchronized. If you haven’t tried this growing trend, it’s pretty simple: You take cannabis before practicing yoga. Marijuana’s relaxing and pain-relieving properties can help improve your physical experience, calm your busy mind and allow you to sink deep into yoga’s meditative state.
Of course, as simple as the idea is, the strain of cannabis you choose can have a big impact on your experience. Some strains may contribute calm and pain relief, while others may lead to unwanted effects like a muddled mind or feeling jittery.
Here are our picks of marijuana strains that may help you get the most out of your yoga session.
For those looking to sink into a relaxing yoga session, the most common starting point is an indica marijuana strain with calming effects. Indicas tend to produce the most relaxing effects, which can be a big help during a yoga practice.
Among indicas, Grape Ape is one popular indica option to try. It’s known for its sweet, grape flavor and aroma, and for imparting:
Grape Ape can melt away the tension before you start to stretch, leaving you calm, uplifted and pain-free for your yoga session.
But be forewarned. Grape Ape is also well known for its sedative and hunger-inducing effects. If you’re sensitive to these effects, Grape Ape may be too much for you. Instead, opt for a hybrid like GSC or a sativa like Super Lemon Haze.
Another indica that works well for cannabis yoga is Northern Lights. This popular indica marijuana strain has a sweet, earthy and spicy aroma with hints of pine, and is prized for the dreamy and relaxed euphoria that it imparts to consumers.
Like Grape Ape, Northern Lights is known to:
But unlike Grape Ape, the high with Northern Lights can be very cerebral. If you need a little something to slow your mind down so that you can stay focused on the physical sensations of yoga, this is a great choice.
Northern Lights is also known to induce appetite and sleepiness, so like Grape Ape, it shouldn’t be consumed by those who are sensitive to these effects. The last thing you want is to feel too sleepy or hungry to stay present in your yoga practice.
If you’re one of those people who doesn’t do well with indicas because they make you too hungry or sleepy, there are other kinds of marijuana strains you can try.
One option is to go with a balanced hybrid strain like GSC (formally known as Girl Scout Cookies). This popular strain is sweet and earthy with hints of a cookie-like aroma. It’s beloved by many for its grounded high, which doesn’t energize or sedate, but leaves the consumer feeling energetically balanced, calm and uplifted.
Another benefit of GSC is the strain’s powerful body high, which can ease tension, pain and nausea. Its cerebral high is also powerful. And while most who take it remain fairly functional, it can lead to a feeling of time slowing down, which can really enhance a yoga experience.
Indicas and hybrids are usually recommended for new cannabis yoga practitioners. But if you’re familiar with cannabis strains and know that sativas work best for you, Super Lemon Haze is a great sativa-dominant option for cannabis yoga.
A vibrant and zesty strain, Super Lemon Haze is sweet, tart and lemony with strong citrus notes. It’s a highly energetic strain, making it a great option for those who get tired during yoga and need an extra boost—either before or after the workout.
It’s also an incredibly uplifting, euphoric and relaxing strain (for those who can handle the energy). Super Lemon Haze also imparts a pain- relieving body high, and a clear, relaxed cerebral high that fits in great with any yoga practice.
On the other hand, for those sensitive to the energetic effects of sativas, this cannabis strain could cause negative effects like anxiety or headaches. If you find that you react this way to sativas, stick to a hybrid or indica strain for your cannabis yoga practice.
All of the options already mentioned are strains with a high tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content.This works great for many, but isn’t right everyone. Some experience unwanted effects from THC such as:
If this has happened for you, or you’d like to ease into cannabis yoga with a more mild option that won’t leave you feeling too high, try a strain rich in cannabidiol (CBD) like ACDC.
ACDC has an earthy and woody aroma with notes of pine. And with a 20:1 CBD-to-THC ratio, ACDC probably won’t impart any psychoactive effects.
Still, ACDC can help with pain and tension, as well as reduce your overall anxiety. This can aid yoga by improving your ability to move and stretch without pain, and by calming your mind while leaving it clear and focused. Take ACDC before yoga to improve your experience, or afterwards to aid in recovery.
Photo credit: Janet Orzechowski
If you’re new to cannabis and want to learn more, take a look at our Cannabis 101 index of articles. HelloMD can help you get your medical marijuana recommendation; it's easy, private and 100% online.