First off, yes that’s how you spell hygiene. Strange to me as well.
I have to say I don’t consider myself anal, but I have certain OCD tendencies that I can’t break. I’ve realized that five of those reside in my yoga hygiene.
Let’s look at the big picture first.
A yoga studio is not a gym.
It is a contained environment, meaning that air circulation is limited (this is usually done to keep the temperature rising). There are things that are acceptable at the gym—crop dusting farts or two-week old tees—that don’t work in the studio because we will end up stewing in our own stink.
When in a yoga class, we all stew together.
I’m not saying we need to fully shower before a sweaty yoga class, but I am suggesting that we take certain precautions to give us, and everyone else, a comfortable experience.
I’m not saying we should cake ourselves so our underarms look like a collective of lather from a bubble bath, but maybe we can use a spray deodorant or squeeze a lemon or lime under there. Let’s try something. Anything.
As men, we all have varying degrees of what we consider acceptable or clean when it comes to laundry—shirts that we wear more than once, or jeans that we like worn-in, so we wear them maybe two or three times.
I get it.
But yoga classes are contained environments, so let’s try to wear freshly laundered shorts and tees. What if our soul mate is behind us? Do we want her to cry from our smell before she even gets to meet us?
3) Mat Maintenance:
I’m not saying we should buy one of those $20 mini spray bottles that make our mat smell like sweat in a lilac field. We can simply rinse our mat off in the shower when we get home, or we can rinse it off using warm water and baking soda. Any method will work, and by keeping our mat clean, we reduce oil build-up and help increase the grip capabilities of the mat, which helps to keep us from slipping and sliding (which should be motivation enough).
4) Toe Nails:
Unless we’re clam diggers, let’s trim those things. Not only will it keep us from scuffing our mat, when we roll on our toes in the transition from Cobra to Down Dog, it will also be way more comfortable.
For gosh sakes, let’s stop giving excuses for our funky feet!
Want to know why?
The toe jam stuck in between our toes is food for the bacteria that create that funky foot smell (this is the same cause of our body odor).
Just consider those smells lovely emissions produced by bacteria eating our nastiness.
After we’ve accomplished number four listed above (toe nail care), if we pour hydrogen peroxide on our feet and toes, it will clean out the nail beds and disinfect our feet.
By adhering to these five keys to good hygiene, we will save ourselves, and everyone else, any unnecessary nasal pollution.
Who knows, it may even give you the confidence to talk to that girl you’ve had your eye on. You know, the one who makes you twist and turn in every pose just so you can check her out.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Apprentice Editor: Brandy Mansfield / Editor: Rachel Nussbaum
Photo: Jackie Aude M.