Fact: We don’t go hiking to sit inside a tent, but sometimes, the weather doesn’t give us a choice. And after hours of sitting inside a 28-square-foot bubble of B.O., listening to rain tapping against the flimsy nylon walls, it’s easy to see how the experience would fray anyone’s nerves.
What’s worse is that sitting still for hours after a workout can actually be harmful to major muscle groups. Lactic acid build-up can cause muscle soreness, stiffness, and fatigue when hikers don’t stretch after a long haul, turning your backpacking trip into a death march.
This series of 10 yoga poses is designed to help wilderness lovers stay limber in mind and body, even when the weather keeps you zippered up. Bust them out on a deflated sleeping pad or bag liner to protect the tent’s flooring.
Finish off your session with a 5-10 minute seated meditation or a Corpse Pose (Savasana) by lying down along your mat, letting go of any prescribed breathing patterns, and quieting your mind.
The aim of any yoga practice is to create space and to allow that physical space to transform into emotional and mental space. Not only will the physical benefits of this practice lessen muscle fatigue and soreness, but the mental clarity brought on by taking 30-60 minutes for self-care will make room for the focus and emotional energy you need to engage in intense outdoor activities.