Outdoor Zen: 10 Yoga Etiquette Rules, Plus Where to Practice for Free

Kelly Singer
Taking a yoga class outdoors can be an exhilarating experience, sans chatter.

It’s almost painful to be indoors on a summer day in Seattle, even for a yoga class. Taking your practice outside allows you to breath fresh air, connect with nature, and literally salute the sun. An outdoor class has a different dynamic than an indoor class and it’s important to know the necessary etiquette so everyone can enjoy the experience.  Here are my top 10 outdoor yoga etiquette rules:

1. Be on time and be prepared to start on time.

2. Bring your friends, but don’t talk. There are already more distractions and your fellow yoginis don’t need to hear about last night.

3. Attempting to get a tan is fine, but a string bikini top is not a good option for class and is a wardrobe malfunction waiting to happen.

4. If there’s a hot honey on the mat next to you, resist the urge to hit on them during class. But after class, fair game.

5. Apply sunscreen before you get to class so your mat won’t be an SPF slip-n-slide.

6. Check for twigs, rocks, etc. before you lay your mat down.

7. Be mindful of the sun when scouting your spot; make sure you can handle the heat for the entire class or find some shade so you won’t be moving.

8. Keep your sneakers or other potentially odorous items at the head of your mat, not your neighbors.

9. If you are a sweat king or queen, bring several towels so you don’t sweat-lash someone after an inversion.

10. Don’t leave during savasana.  It’s distracting to your neighbors and disrespectful to your instructor. Give outdoor classes the same reverence.

And please, for the love of Krishna, turn your cell phone off!

Want to try outdoor yoga yourself? Olympic Sculpture Park is offering free outdoor yoga classes this summer taught by 8 Limbs Yoga.  Classes start July 9th and run every Saturday at 10 a.m. until August 27th.  More info can be found here.  See you there!