In line with the principle of Ahimsa, which translates as “non-harming,” as yogis we’re continually looking for ways to live in a peaceful way on and off the mat. This includes seeking ways to minimize our impact on the environment.
Living green and remaining in balance with nature is not just something to practice at home. We have a responsibility to try to live it in all we do, all over the world—including how we do our yoga and where we go on vacation. After all, why should we live at home one way, but lose our intentions while traveling or taking a yoga class?
What if we developed a personal Green Commitment for our lives and made a point to find the best green places and ways of life to support our mission.
As Yogis what can we do to celebrate Earth Day every day?
- Seek out yoga products and clothing that are produced without using toxic chemicals, pesticides or nonrenewable resources.
- Bring a reusable water bottle to yoga class.
- Walk, bike, bus or carpool to class.
- Clean your mat with a non toxic spray.
- Reuse rather than discard your old yoga mat.
- Encourage your local studio to offer non-toxic yoga products and organic clothing (like bamboo or hemp).
- Only take a hard copy of the schedule if necessary, otherwise use on-line resources.
- Make earth-friendly choices in all you do related to your yoga.
Why not green your vacation as part of your eco-lifestyle?
Ecotourism is defined by The International Ecotourism Society as responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people. There are 37 voluntary standards that make up the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria, including employing local residents, minimizing disruption to natural ecosystems and protecting wildlife. These measures were adopted in 2008 by the World Conservation Congress as part of an initiative led by groups including the Rainforest Alliance, the U.N. Environment Program and the U.N. World Tourism Organization.
Ecotourism and greening your vacation automatically helps offset your carbon footprint and is a great way to discover new destinations. It also ensures they’ll remain unchanged for future generations. As Ayako Ezaki of The International Ecotourism Society puts it, “Ecotourism tries not only to minimize the negative impact of travel but to maximize the positive impact. We all know travel experiences are rewarding for people who take the trips. At the same time we try to give back to the destinations and the people who make these experiences possible.”
Here are 6 Easy Tips To Stay Green On Vacation:
1. When offered less frequent Towel and Linen service, take it.
Instead of having your bed linens changed everyday, consider reducing your request to 3 times/week.
2. Be conscious of creating less waste where you go visit.
Bring a water bottle or travel coffee mug with you. Don’t take 10 paper napkins if you only need one.
3. Buy local and eat local.
Contribute to the local economy by making sure you don’t purchase something that has been flown in from halfway around the world.
Instead of motorized transportation make a point to walk or ride a bike so you minimize your foot print.
As you look ahead to plan your next vacation, commit to supporting an eco-conscious way of travel. It’s good for you and the environment.
5. Show your appreciation.
Thank the hotel management for any green steps they take so they know you appreciate their efforts.
6. Research green hotels before you go.
Research places where by purchasing carbon offsets they will reward you that amount for any spa service or excursion. Here are some useful links to get you started:
As you look ahead to plan your next yoga class or vacation, commit to supporting an eco-conscious way of travel. It’s good for you and the environment. Together, let’s do all we can to minimize any negative impact on the health of our planet.
Love yourself, love your day, love your life (and love your planet)!
Editor’s note: This is a guest post by Daily Cup of Yoga contributor Silvia Mordini, E-RYT, retreat leader, happiness coach, and yogipreneur. Enthusiasm to love your life is contagious around Silvia. Her expert passion connects people to their own joyful potential. Silvia lives her happiness in such a big way that you can’t help but leave her classes, workshops, trainings and retreats spiritually uplifted! Born in Ecuador, raised traveling around the globe, she is an enthusiastic citizen of the world and spiritual adventurer. She has over 10,000 hours and 15 years of teaching experience, owned a yoga studio for 9 years and after being run over by a car used yoga to recover physically and emotionally. Silvia leads Alchemy Tours Yoga Retreats and Alchemy of Yoga RYT200 Yoga Teacher Training.
Silvia can be reached on the Web at www.alchemytours.com or www.silviamordini.com, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @alchemytours, @inspiredyogagal; Facebook: Silvia Mordini; YouTube: lovingyourday; Pinterest: Silvia Mordini; Intagram: alchemytours.