Hiking Meets Yoga

By Alyssa Pirrello, Go Nomad

Original article at www.gonomad.com

Looking for a way to combine your favorite fitness class with your love for the outdoors? Look no further than Yogihiker, an outdoor adventure fusion between hiking and yoga located in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

What Is a Yogihike?

A Yogihike is a combined hiking and yoga experience. There are numerous different trails that Yogihiker uses, but there is a “trail of the day” each day, which is where the Yogihike will take place.

The amount of guests taking the Yogihike determines which trail is the trail of the day, so it’s crucial to check your booking confirmation to know which trail to go to even if you’ve gone on numerous Yogihikes before.

Yogihikers hike on the trail of the day until reaching the optimal spot for yoga. Yogihiker guides lead guests through various yoga poses, and then they will continue on hiking until they return back to the trailhead. Yogihiker Lauren Craig looks back on her first time Yogihiking and said, “it was great! The hike was difficult, but that really warmed our muscles up for the yoga portion.”

When Are the Yogihikes?

Yogihikes take place on certain Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays from March through November. The hikes typically depart at 9:00 AM, but the exact time will be noted when you’re booking the hike. Yogihikes may be available at different days or times by special request.

Yogihikes only last two and a half to three hours, so they are a great way to start your day. If you’re looking for a longer Yogihiking experience, you can participate in the Aspen Immersion Hike, which is three and a half to four hours long.

The Principle Behind Yogihiking

Yoga and hiking both have one underlying principle behind them- they are both about simply being. Even though people are moving constantly while hiking and often staying still while doing yoga, the exercise in both of these activities is meant to make a person feel peaceful.

Additionally, being fully present is an important component of both hiking and yoga. Whether it’s holding a pose or climbing over a boulder, one must focus to accomplish the task at hand. Since yoga and hiking have these core similarities, it makes sense that people love doing a hybrid version of the two together.

Do I Need Experience Hiking? Doing Yoga?

Surprisingly, you do not need experience hiking or doing yoga in order to enjoy a Yogihike! As long as you regularly exercise in some form, are enthusiastic about experiencing nature in a new way, and are open to trying yoga, you are ready to take a Yogihike.

Unfortunately, children under age nine currently cannot participate in a Yogihike. However, youth ages nine to eighteen are welcome to come as long as an adult accompanies them.

Even though all fitness levels are welcome to attend a Yogihike, that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Lauren Craig explained that “sometimes the terrain can make it tricky to perform some poses… but if you find a flat spot, then it [Yogihiking] is very nice.”

Hiking Conditions in Santa Fe

Santa Fe is a beautiful place to hike with blue skies and over three hundred days of sunlight each year. The city can be hot- the morning temperatures during the summer months can range from seventy to eighty five degrees Fahrenheit, while the mornings are cooler during the fall and spring with the temperature usually ranging from sixty to seventy degrees Fahrenheit.

The hikes are at a fairly high altitude- most begin at an elevation of around 7,350 feet with an ascent of around 500 feet. While some people will not experience the effects of high altitude at all, others may experience lightheadedness or headaches. Because of this, Yogihiker suggests that hikers acclimatize for a few days to become accustomed with the altitude in addition to staying hydrated and avoiding alcohol and tobacco.

Is There Anything I Should Bring?

The most basic guidelines would be to bring anything you normally would on a hike. A water bottle, comfortable shoes, stretchy pants, and sunscreen are all necessary. Previous hikers strongly recommend wearing layers, bringing lots of water, and putting on sunscreen before the hike.

Additionally, a jacket for cooler mornings, sunglasses, and a hat are all also recommended. However, you don’t need to worry about bringing anything for yoga, for Yogihiker will provide yoga mats and any other props necessary for the hike.

Why Combine Yoga and Hiking in the First Place?

There are numerous reasons why these two activities are excellent combined, but one of the most prominent is that it allows people to create a greater connection between yoga and nature. Additionally, participating on the hike with other people can provide an even better experience and a good workout at the same time.

“I liked doing the activities together. It was great to do yoga outside,” Lauren Craig explained, “I liked being out in nature while doing yoga. I like feeling the sun on my face… I also like that you get a good stretch after hiking [uphill]. My muscles felt tired, but not stiff.”

How to Get Involved

Yogihikes are $95 per person, except for the Aspen Immersion Yogihike, which is $145 per person. It is highly recommended to reserve your spot on a Yogihike in advance; however, people are able to join the Yogihike more last minute if spaces are still available.

Even if you are unsure about whether or not you want to Yogihike, you should check out the Yogihiker website. Besides having contact information and more details, the website also includes glowing testimonials from several previous participants.

All of the past participants seem to agree- Yogihiking is an excellent way to combine yoga, hiking, and nature to create a memorable experience right outside of the city in Santa Fe.

 Copyright © 2014 by Go Nomad. This article was written by Alyssa Pirrello and originally published at www.gonomad.com