Relax your muscles and calm your mind. Essential oils can be absorbed through aromatherapy, where they are inhaled or by direct application to the skin, which includes massage. They can reduce muscle pain & soreness, calm nerves, improve skin conditions and general skin and hair health.
Inhaling essential oils stimulate the limbic system, which is an area of the brain connected to emotions, behaviours and long term memory. The limbic system also aids with some unconscious functions of the body; heart rate, blood pressure and breathing.
When the oils are applied directly to the skin, they can significantly reduce muscle pain and alleviate tightness.
Our favourite way is to diffuse the oils whilst doing morning yoga practice, to enhance our mood and promote better breathing / breath control. Here are our top 4 picks to aid recovery and healing:
Lavender is one of the most popular oils used in aromatherapy and massage due to its multipurpose benefits. It reduces stress levels, alleviates headaches, combats eczema and muscular pain. Try applying a small amount onto the affected skin or massage into tight muscles after training.
Known for its anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial benefits, eucalyptus oil is high on our list! It is amazing when diffused during stretching and yoga practice as it promotes clearer breathing and open airways due to the main chemical components; eucalyptol and alpha-terpineol. It can also be used in an anti-bacterial, natural yoga mat spray cleaner. Try it out by mixing the ingredients below to keep your eco-friendly mat clean and shiny:
- 8 fluid oz distilled water.
- Vinegar or Witch-hazel, optional.
- 10-15 drops tea tree oil.
- 6-10 drops eucalyptus oil (or lavender)
The scent of rosemary oil eases throat congestion, and also treats allergies, sore throats and the cold. The oil can be diffused to get these benefits or massaged directly to aching muscles to help with pain. Just apply a mixture of 2 drops of rosemary oil, 2 drop of peppermint oil and 1 tsp of coconut oil to the aching joints or sore muscles to help alleviate pain/aching.
Recent studies have suggested that ylang ylang oil may help alleviate anxiety, combat depression and lower blood pressure. It was traditionally used in Chinese medicine for centuries for both physical and mental disorders. Try diffusing the oil for gentle relaxation during yoga practice or for your home.
As well as the above benefits, essential oils can also be used to enhance healthy hair and hair growth. Try making this delightful shampoo below for a daily, natural shampoo.
Make Your Own "Healthy Hair Shampoo"