Plastic is Not Fantastic – Or Doing Yoga ethically…
Will 2018 be looked back on as the year the world turned its back on single use plastic? In the UK, at least, thanks to Sir David Attenborough and BBC’s Blue Planet II, it became part of the zeitgeist. The general public had a collective ‘Eureka’ moment – suddenly seeing the damaging effects of all the waste we create.
My ‘Eureka’ moment for all that came slightly earlier – in 2015. On becoming pregnant, I started thinking more and more about the impact our choices were making on the planet. I didn’t want to be contributing tonnes of nappies a year to landfill.
Cue the dive into the world of ethical baby products, cloth nappies and wipes. It is something I would heartily recommend to anyone considering it as an option. There are loads of great online articles, blogs and support groups to help you on your cloth journey too.
Ethics and accessibility
When I came to start my own business, it was only natural that I would look into how I could run according to my eco-values.
I provide my own mats for my yogis in most venues I teach in. This is to help make yoga accessible to everyone. Quite frankly, parents have enough to lug about without adding a yoga mat. It also means you don’t need to get anything new when coming to class. If you’ve never done yoga before, you can come and try it without buying new things.
The mats I provide are Eco Yoga mats – they are made from natural rubber and jute – not PVC or other plastics, like most yoga mats. With care, they will last just as long, if not longer, than their plastic contemporaries. When they do eventually need to be replaced, they will decompose down if disposed of correctly. I also think they are pretty awesome mats to do yoga on! (Some people may have issues with latex – if you have a rubber allergy, let me know. I will source an alternative.)
When I use props in my classes, I try and make them myself, or source them second hand or ethically. I prefer to use natural materials for their sensory qualities. When I do use plastics, I make sure they are not single use, and that I have carefully considered alternatives.
I try to make sure that what we use in class is not negatively impacting the planet, or people in any way. This is in line with the Yamas in yoga philosophy (that is, the ethical guidelines to try and live by).
If you are trying to cut down on the plastic yourself then it might be reassuring to know your yoga practice with us is eco-friendly too!