1. Don’t bring your newest and best yoga mat
Your mat is going to have a really hard time within 24 days. It will be drained with sweat, it has to put up with UV radiation while drying outside, and you will chaturanga the hell out of it. It has to be comfortable enough to not make your aching body even worse, but it doesn’t have to be a top class mat because at the end of it – it will look like a rug anyway.
2. Long leggings – oh yeah!
In 30+ degrees, sun, exercising – shorts and a little top seems the only option. Nay! You will sweat A LOT. You may be skinny, no fat, no water, just bones, but you will sweat. You will see even your toes being totally wet and all other weird places pouring out your life source. Long leggings will absorb a great amount of that and keep your mat at least a little more dry. With bare and sweaty legs, it’s nearly impossible to do some of the poses (i.e., bakasana) because you just slip on your own body. But a little belly-baring top is good option. And don’t worry about your muffin top – no one will care about it while trying to survive in adho mukha svanasana.
3. Less is more
You don’t need too many clothes. There are places that will take care of your laundry in short time and cheap. Your luggage will be filled with too much stuff anyhow, so find a way to make it less. You won’t need much there.
4. Bring a lot of pens!
I ran out of 4 pens there. And we did not write THAT much but I had some kind of weird pen curse. I am very picky about pens so the pens I had to buy there made writing harder for me. Should have brought my faves to make scribbling a little nicer.
5. Beach bag or small backpack
Why I didn’t think of that? You need to carry your manual, notebook, water bottle and god-knows-what the whole day up and down the shala, and it is much easier when you don’t have to use your 10 fingers and teeth for that. A backpack would have been nice.
6. A flashlight
I didn’t understand at first why we would need that but yes… Some trainings end in complete darkness, and heading down from the hilltop shala is like being on a road with blind eyes. And if you stay in the dorm and are considerate to others who would like to sleep without the lights on, you will need a flashlight to study the materials. The head torch would have helped a lot!
7. Small towel!
You will be provided with a bath towel but bring your own little sweat wiper as well. It is a comforting reminder of home and makes you feel like Linus from the Peanuts comics, but it’s mostly very handy if your mat is drowning in sweat and you can’t even see behind your sweat curtains.