Yoga and Pilates have been the go-to types of workouts for many people throughout the years, as they are great ways of keeping your body flexible, exercising, creating a consistent schedule, and being part of a social group. Lately, however, given the pandemic situation, some have quit, but some have decided to move the studio into their own homes. If that sounds like something you’d be willing to do, in this article we’re going to give you as many tips as possible on what equipment to get, how to organize the room, and the fun part, how to decorate.
First and foremost, the criteria that the room must meet for either of these two practices are:
- A large enough space to perform any exercise on any piece of equipment
- Natural light/Dimmable lighting
- A good ventilation system/Windows
- Wood flooring (carpet can soak up sweat)
After deciding which room of the house is fit for a transformation, it’s time to make a list of everything you’ll need to help you during the workout. To make it a little easier, we’ll split this part in two, as equipment can differ.
- For Yoga, you’ll be needing mats for the ground exercises, flexibility straps, a single-layer blanket to keep warm during meditation or for added cushioning, blocks/bolsters/chairs for support, eye pillows for face-down poses, and sandbags for deeper stretches.
- What you need for Pilates is a reformer, a Cadillac, a specialized chair, a barrel, and those might require more space, as they are bulkier. The tools that come in a smaller size are resistance bands, mats for protection, foam rollers, magic circles, and stability balls.
Other pieces that can be easily forgotten are racks or shelves, where you’ll be storing everything after a workout, a TV and DVDs (don’t forget to get a wall mount or a TV stand), should you need assistance during your sessions, one or more wall mirrors to improve your posture and poses, chimes (bells/bongs) in case you’re practicing with several friends and you need sound cues, and several towels to pat yourself dry. But, as anyone at Winsor Pilates could tell you, immediately splurging on equipment is not something advisable, and you should take some time to read into the specifications when considering different models. This way you’re enabling yourself to find versions better suited to your needs. And, although having the right tools is a huge step in starting your private studio, it isn’t everything if the ambiance doesn’t match your intentions. So, we’ll be moving on to the next aspect of creating a wonderful relaxation corner.
Preparing a Fresh Environment
The one factor that is important anywhere you go is the quality of the air you breathe, and the workout room is no exception. It’s probably even more important in this space since you’re exerting yourself, thus causing rapid breathing. Therefore, having an air purifier, especially one with an activated carbon filter, can be extremely practical for ridding the air of particles and unwanted odors. For rooms high in humidity you can get a dehumidifier, or if your room is extremely dry, consider a warm mist humidifier as it can bring the moisture levels where they should be as well as keep your skin and respiratory tract from getting irritated because of the dryness. And as a bonus, during the colder months, it can help ease congestion. Salt lamps are also mentioned as being a good option for purifying, and especially for changing the vibe of a room into a calming one.
If you’re into good-smelling rooms, other elements that you can add to enhance the atmosphere are those that have to do with aromatherapy, like essential oil diffusers, pouches of potpourri, or candles with different fragrances. Pair those with a fan and your studio can make you feel like you’re getting a spa experience.
Drink & Snack Corner
Keeping good nutrition is important, and even more so when you engage in practices or sports that are focused on burning calories, building muscle mass and flexibility, and improving cardio. Many people have noted the difference that a mini-fridge and snack tray can make during those longer sessions that don’t allow for breaks longer than 5 minutes. Choose a corner of the room, preferably one near an outlet to avoid having to use an extension cord, get yourself a mini-fridge and stack it up with several tasty foods that can keep you energized during your sweat sessions. Peanutbutter sandwiches, salads, milk, smoothies, and different types of yogurt. And those are just a few examples of the easy-to-eat food options available. To fill your snack tray go for fruits (such as grapes, apples, bananas, etc.), cereal, crackers, or baked vegetable strips. Hydration-wise you can get energy drinks, a 12-pack of small water bottles, or even a water dispenser, and before your workout starts you can make a pot of tea to set on the tray as well. If cold tea is not something you fancy, try using a cast-iron kettle to make your desired amount as its material heats up evenly and it can keep the contents warm up to 30 minutes after it’s taken off the stove.
The last corner we’ll address is the one that should preferably be positioned somewhere behind you, so as not to beckon you and take your focus off the exercise. We’re talking about the relaxation corner, the one in which you can serve your treats during breaks or where you can lay down after you’ve completed your goals for the day. Here, everything from the floor to the ceiling can be decorated in one way or another, and here’s how:
- On the Floor – Comfortable, fluffy pillows and throw blankets with colorful or delicate patterns that invite you to sit down. Stylish rugs and bean bags are also good alternatives.
- Furniture and Accessories – Open shelves or cabinets in which you can keep mugs, bowls, baskets, and more. On those, you can also put potted plants, books, or candle trays and holders. And don’t forget about getting a trashcan of a reasonable size.
- On the Walls – Motivational posters or framed pictures, paintings, decorative hanging lights, hanging plants.
Keep Cleaning a Priority
And finally, this aspect is closely related to the one about maintaining a fresh environment, because you also need to keep everything you use clean. You might be tempted to skip this step sometimes, especially if you’re the only one using the room, but keep in mind that repeated use plus sweat can have an unwanted effect on both the equipment, as it can get faulty, and the smell of the room. Windows should be opened, exercise mats should be aired out every time, tools and equipment should be wiped down, floors vacuumed or mopped, surfaces dusted regularly, trash taken out, and so on.
What we can suggest is adding a smaller cupboard in one side of the room, maybe near the door, in which you can keep essentials:
- Antibacterial wipes
- Hand sanitizer
- Disinfectant spray (70% IPA)
- Rubber gloves
- A sponge/scrub brush
- Microfiber cloths
- Paper towel rolls
- All-purpose cleaner
- Trashbag rolls
- Broom and dustpan set (compact size)
- Vacuum cleaner
To sum it up
If a home studio is on your list of projects, we hope we’ve given you all the information you needed to go for it! Our last suggestion is for you to first keep everything moderate and see how you feel about the room, and then to add to it gradually, both equipment and decor pieces, until you reach the point when you feel extremely comfortable and relaxed while doing your daily routine.
Summary : Has the pandemic caused a disruption in your daily practices and you can’t find it in you to enjoy working out as much with all the new restrictions? Try turning a room in your house into your own private studio and relaxation space. Click here for some tips.