Are you looking to understand how to use yoga blocks? Want information on how to buy the best yoga blocks for your practice? I give you in this article all the essential information to know, on yoga blocks or yoga bricks, when you start.
Yoga block: what is its function?
Yoga blocks are an essential accessory to your yoga session. They will quickly become your allies in your postures. A yoga brick can have several purposes:
- Support you
- Improve your comfort
- To support you
- Help you reach the ground more easily
Most of the time, you will use a block, because it will allow you to come and extend your limbs, especially your arms, in order to get closer to the ground. It will thus help you practice a difficult posture where you still lack flexibility.
Yoga blocks also help prevent injury to yourself. Without their help, you would tend to strain your back too much or pull on the muscles. They, therefore, allow you to support and relieve you when going further in the posture would become too intense for you.
Finally, yoga bricks are particularly useful if you lack flexibility. They can be placed between the legs, under the arms, to serve as a support, support the weight of your body or even get stuck under certain parts of the body to gain stability and comfort.
However, it would be a shame to think that yoga blocks are only for beginners. This is wrong, they can be useful to all yogis according to their practices. Many yogis use it to progress.
What are yoga blocks?
The yoga brick is rectangular in shape and usually has a standardized size: 22cm x 11cm x 7cm. Its thickness of 6 to 7 cm allows it to be easily caught in one hand. It is often light which also allows it to be easily moved from one side of your carpet to the other.
A yoga brick is made of cork or EVA foam, and more rarely it can be found in bamboo. The most common yoga blocks are usually made of foam. Unfortunately not very ecological, they are quite soft and therefore ideal to sit on without pain. This is why they have become over time the favourites of yoga practitioners.
They are also very light. On the other hand, the cork blocks are going to be heavier and firmer. They will have the same utility as the foam yoga blocks but will sometimes be more uncomfortable if you want to rest on them for example, like in Yin Yoga.
Using yoga blocks
The shape of the yoga bricks is very useful, as it allows it to be used at three heights:
- On the lengthwise edge
- On the side in the width
You can also use two blocks at the same time, for example, to easily put your elbows in the stretched-out pose with your elbows bent or to intensify a stretch. For example, you can put two blocks on top of each other in the back for the fish pose.
Don’t have a yoga block? To start, some courses will often offer you to lend or rent blocks. At home, you can borrow a large book such as a dictionary which will serve similar purposes. However, if you practice on a regular basis, a yoga brick is still a worthwhile purchase to consider that requires a small budget. It will allow you to gain comfort in your daily practice.
Best Yoga Blocks of 2021
ZURA Premium Yoga Block
The ZURA Premium Yoga Block is a great selection of cubes for yogis wanting to ensure their yoga clothes have minimal effect on the environment. This very sleek and stylish block could easily double as an attractive piece of furniture, but can also be one of the very practical and well-rounded blocks we have ever come across.
Zura is made from spring bamboo, which can be known in some Eastern cultures as a sign of friendship and also a stimulus to both creativity and religious recovery. Although heavier than many yoga cubes created from foam, ZURA Premium 7kg Fat Yoga Cubes shouldn’t be much to deal with for most buyers and results in much superior strength and durability which block crucial selling points.
This solid cubic construction means it can’t be squeezed or grabbed as easily as the thicker foam versions. But this stability will be greatly appreciated by yogis who place stability, strength and encouragement at the top of their priority list and also for many users can inspire much more confidence than cubes made with much more flexible materials. , light and not as powerful.
Main features of the ZURA Premium yoga block:
- Made with fine source bamboo
- 23cm x 15cm x 10cm
- Weighs 7 kg.
- Rounded edges
- Completely natural, non-toxic, and environmentally friendly substances
- Lifetime warranty
If you are looking for a simpler, easier-to-use instrument that can dramatically improve the quality and comfort of your yoga sessions, these top-notch yoga cubes are a great selection. For more home exercise equipment, check out our reviews of the best ankle weights, the best yoga poses, and the best exercise balls.
Node Fitness Premium Yoga Block
Node Fitness Premium Yoga Blocks are created from high-density EVA foam which is both super lightweight and much more durable and sturdy than the foams used in most other budget versions of the Yoga Cube. These blocks also use closed cell technology which prevents moisture from entering the material and also makes it slippery and also makes a perfect breeding ground for germs and amazing odours.
Even though they are a bit softer than the other models in our inspection, these cubes are firm enough to keep the burden of the majority of consumers in the most forceful poses and use a non-invasive surface and bevelled edges that ensure that ‘they are easy to grip in poses. that require gripping them with your palms.
Measuring 9 x 6 x 10cm and weighing over 142g each, these cubes are also one of the very light and mobile in our inspection, making them a great alternative for yogis who intend to carry them from their own studio, fitness center, or workplace.
Main features of the Node Fitness Premium yoga block:
- Set of two cubes
- Each cube measures 9 x 6 x 10 cm
- Non-slip surface
- Each cube weighs less than 142g
- Easy to grip bevelled edges
Ape Movement Yoga Blocks & Straps Set
The Ape Movement Yoga Block & Strap Place is the perfect combo kit for yogis of all types, whether you practice primarily at home, in a studio or fitness center, are a more sophisticated practitioner, or are just getting started. to earn your first yogi stripes.
The 2 blocks of this group are in soft but very welcoming high-density EVA foam. They are lightweight, durable, easy to transfer to and from the yoga studio, and also use rounded edges to make them easy to grip and maintain during your poses.
The next part of the kit is a 2.4m yoga strap, 100% cotton, soft to the touch, will not rub or irritate the skin like any type of nylon or polyester, and has rings on it. Double metal D-rings on each conclusion that allow you to use it as a carrying strap for your yoga mat, a particularly handy feature for much more forgetful yogis likely to come to the studio without a full complement of clothing! This strap is a handy addition for novices and experienced yogis alike, allowing you to vary movements, achieve a greater range of motion, and try more difficult poses without fear of falling or losing your balance.
As a bonus, the makers of Ape Movement are also donating a portion of the profits back to individuals and businesses that make a difference in the yoga and movement communities, meaning your purchase is also an investment in the yoga clan.
Main Features of Yoga Block and Ape Movement Strap:
- Set of two cubes
- Made of durable EVA foam
- Each cube measures 4 x 6 x 23 cm
- Easy to grip curved edges
- Bracelet 100% cotton composed
- The strap doubles as a yoga mat store
Some postures to do with a yoga block:
Some yoga postures are best done with yoga blocks. I have detailed for you today some positions that often require the use of a yoga block, and explain why.
The stretched triangle pose – Utthita Trikonasana
This pose is great for stretching the entire side of the body and the hips. However, it can be very intense if you want to put your hand on the floor. Put his hand where? Yes, I know… If you are just starting out, it probably seems unthinkable to you. I have been there as well. Moreover, even today, this posture with one hand on the ground still seems uncomfortable to me: I prefer to use a yoga block to practice it. So, while taking the posture, place a yoga block on the inside of your front foot. This will allow you to come and lean on it once in the position. Likewise, in an inverted triangle, do not hesitate to place the block in the same place, and why not on the width, so that it is even closer to your arm.
The side angle pose with a yoga block – Utthita Parsvakonasana
This yoga posture has several variations. In the first level, when you are starting out, you can place your bent arm on your knee. Gradually, however, you will want to place your hand flat on the ground. So, to practice feeling this stretch without hurting yourself, place a yoga block on the outside of your front foot. You can come and land on it. However, the goal is not to collapse on the brick or place your full body weight on it. In yoga, even with support, we try to balance the weight of the body in the posture.
The Half Moon Pose – Ardhra Chandrasana
Yoga blocks can also be used in the practice of balance. For example, the halfpipe pose can be difficult to achieve. This yoga position slightly resembles Warrior III. However, you are working here in the hip opening (while in Warrior III the hips are closed) and with one arm that seeks to touch the ground while the other rises to the sky. But here’s the catch … When you bend down to touch the ground with your fingertip, your spine is often no longer parallel to the ground and the ground can appear far away. Thus, using a block will allow you to find a nice alignment in the spine and help you stay longer in the posture.
The fish pose – Matsyasana
The fish pose is an open heart pose that can be difficult to work on for beginners in yoga. The yoga block will help you relax your shoulders a little more backward and open the rib cage forward by rounding your back. To do this, place it between the shoulder blades to allow the neck to fall slightly back. Be careful if you have cervical and thyroid problems, seek the advice of your doctor before practising this posture. By practising this posture from time to time, the yoga block will allow you to work on your opening in the upper body. But it can be quite intense at first, so listen to your body.
How are yoga blocks used in class?
As you will see, the yoga block is widely used in Iyengar Yoga. The reason? It allows you to find a better alignment in the postures, to put less strain on the muscles, and thus to reduce injuries. By the way, Iyengar yoga is the style of yoga most recommended by doctors, because by using a lot of supports and equipment, it limits as much as possible the bad positions which could be dangerous for the practitioners.
Bricks and yoga styles
In addition, yoga blocks are also used in another very different style of yoga: Yin yoga. It is a style of yoga where the postures are held for a minimum of 3 minutes and sometimes 10 minutes. This practice, ideal for flexibility, is nevertheless quite intense. This is because it can be difficult to stay still in a position that works the muscles and joints for a long time. So to avoid discomfort or pain, the blocks can be used to support the weight of the body in certain postures. For example, we can use them to release the head above in the posture of the Sphinx or the Dragonfly for example.
Yoga blocks and posture
On the other hand, the blocks of yoga are used in all practices for the moment of meditation. Indeed, we can sometimes stay 10 minutes in yoga meditation. Likewise, during Pranayama exercises, which are often performed in a seated position. So, to help you stay comfortable in your posture, you can place a yoga block under your glutes. This will allow you to have less back pain over the minutes but also to keep your spine straight.
The yoga brick also allows you not to go back when you are seated, as we sometimes tend to do. Placed under your buttocks, it will help you with the Sitting Clamp posture for example.
Finally, in some postures, you can place yoga blocks under the knees, under the thighs, or elsewhere in order to stabilize yourself. This can help to avoid leaving a leg empty or to relieve a stretch that is too intense. For example, in the Butterfly posture, if the knees are very far from the ground, two bricks can be placed under the thighs in order to limit the work of gravity which can quickly become painful. In a way, the yoga block will then serve as a wedge.
Buying a yoga block: my advice
Are you looking to buy a yoga block to help you with your regular practice? Here are some tips I can give you over my years of practice.
Yoga bricks are generally quite simple in their design. It is usually a relatively small object, cut into a standard shape and made from a sturdy but generally lightweight material. But even in their simplicity, not all yoga bricks are created equal and there are a variety of features you can choose from.
Yoga bricks are generally available in two sizes, small and large. Each size has its own dimensions. Smaller bricks are usually around 7cm long, 15cm wide and 22cm high. Big bricks basically add extra length making them 10cm long, 15cm wide and 22cm high.
If your flexibility is more limited or if you are taller, you may want to consider a larger block, as that extra size can give you a bit more support, especially when used with standing postures. Decide which size is best for your yoga needs or try both and see for yourself.
As the name suggests, a yoga block usually has the shape of a block, a rectangular block most of the time. But there are similar products on the market which are used as yoga bricks like yoga brick which still has the same block shape with holes in the middle.
There is the yoga egg, which has rounded edges that make it similar to an egg, as well as yoga wedges and even yoga arches to provide back support. While rectangular yoga brick is standard, it’s important to know that there are other options as well.
Yoga bricks are made from three standard materials, wood, cork, and foam.
- Wood: This is the least common of the three materials, as it tends to be the most expensive and a bit heavier; so it is not as easy to take to yoga studio classes. But it is the most ecological and solid option. If you’re buying for your home or personal studio and the wooden yoga bricks are within your budget, the extra strength might well be worth saving a few extra bucks.
- Cork: If you are still looking to be friendly with the earth, you should consider a yoga block Cork. Dense cork yoga bricks are not as sturdy as wood but still offer good stability with a much cheaper price than that attached to wood yoga bricks.
- Foam: Yoga bricks are the economic yoga brick. If you just can’t save enough money on your budget to afford cork or wood, foam yoga bricks are still a great option.
They’re super light, making them super easy to throw in your yoga bag and take to the studio, park, beach, or wherever you go for a fun and relaxing yoga session.
Finally, I personally prefer EVA foam yoga blocks because I find them to be lighter and more comfortable. But their soft shape can sometimes put off some practitioners. Men in particular, who generally have more strength, will be able to deform them more easily. However, remember that you are not supposed to put your full weight on the yoga bricks. So, if you choose a good quality one, it can last you for years.
But cork bricks also have advantages. They are very non-slip, easier to clean and retain less perspiration. No doubt men will find them more suited to their practice. If you are not doing Yin Yoga, but feel that you need it to get you closer to the ground, these can also be a good option.
Yoga plates: what are they?
Very similar to yoga blocks, yoga plates are sometimes used in some practices. They can also be foam or cork. They are wider than blocks, but also thinner which allows them to be used especially for wedging. For example, in the practice of Yin Yoga, they will be used a lot. Likewise, beginner yoga practitioners can use some to slide them under each hand in an upside-down dog fashion. This will help them adopt this position, which is quite physical at the start.
You now know everything there is to know about yoga blocks, but also the practices and positions where they are used. Do not hesitate to ask me all your questions about this yoga accessory and to give me your opinion on how these blocks help you in your sessions.