Despite having lived and traveled around 30+ countries, I simply haven’t figured out how to efficiently fill a suitcase.
I inevitably pack way too much of all the wrong stuff and then rely on my (wonderful) husband to cart around any additional bits and pieces I pick up along the way.
It probably doesn’t help that I’m also that person who waits until the morning of my flight to begin blindly throwing clothes straight from the hanger to my bag. It’s always a surprise what outfits I’ll end up with, and honestly, it’s rarely a very good surprise.
Naturally, I was just as unprepared for my one-month immersion yoga teacher training at Blue Osa. But this time I found I wasn’t alone—it turns out packing for 30 days of yoga in Costa Rica is a daunting task for everyone!
A few days before the end of our training, a few of us ladies sat around the pool and brainstormed everything we wished we had brought with us on our yoga teacher training program. What follows is a comprehensive yoga teaching training packing list catered to women participating in a 30-day immersion in a tropical location. However, this list can be applied to all genders and all yoga programs in most places in the world!
Don’t be like me. Be prepared for your yoga teacher training program with our ultimate packing checklist.
What to Bring to Yoga Teacher Training
Don’t let underpacking for your training trip keep you from engaging in yoga philosophy and practice! Here are the essentials you need for your yoga teaching training:
1. 7 Days Worth of Yoga Clothes
You may think you need to bring every piece of yoga clothing you own since you’ll be practicing yoga in the humidity. However, Blue Osa provides complimentary laundry service once a week, so I found that seven days of yoga clothes was the perfect amount. As a rough rule of thumb, bring at least:
- 1 pair of yoga shorts
- 4 to 5 pairs of yoga pants
- 7 tank tops, a few with built-in bras
- 4 to 5 sports bras
2. Loose Fitting and Comfortable Clothes
You’ll be practicing a lot of yoga, but you’ll also have free days and evenings off. After a long day of yoga, the only thing I wanted to do was get out of my tight fitting clothes. But alas, I didn’t bring enough loose-fitting, comfortable clothes for the trip. Next time around, I would pack:
- 2 pairs of shorts
- 1 to 2 pairs of long, lightweight pants
- 2 to 3 causal dresses and/or skirts
- 3 to 4 casual tees or tops
3. Light Sweater or Cardigan
Even if you are traveling to the jungle, you might find that the early mornings and evenings can be surprisingly chilly. I often wore a sweater to morning meditation.
I bring at least one sarong with me everywhere I go. They can double as scarves, blankets, pool cover-ups, laundry totes and so much more. (The Blue Osa Gift Shop sells sarongs.)
5. 1 to 2 Swimsuits
You won’t have heaps of time for tanning by the pool, but you will want a swimsuit for those sunny afternoons.
6. Sandals and Walking Shoes
Don’t forget about your favorite pair of flip-flops. You might also consider bringing some comfortable running or walking shoes depending on the location. (Running is common at Blue Osa, but to be honest, I’ve yet to put on anything other than sandals.) Some students also like to bring water shoes.
7. Notebooks and Journals
Participating in a yoga teacher training program is a life-changing experience; you will definitely want a place to reflect on the challenges and rewards of the month! You’ll also need a place to take notes during classes and lectures. Many students expressed that they should have brought one notebook specifically for taking notes and one journal that served purely as a dairy.
8. Yoga Mat
Most yoga retreat centers will have yoga mats available (including Blue Osa) but if you are partial to your personal mat, it’s better to bring it along. After all, you’re going to spend a lot of time on this bad boy, and you don’t always know what quality will be provided to you.
Also, consider bringing a yoga towel depending on the type of yoga program you are participating in.
9. Yoga Books
Your yoga teacher training program will likely have a required reading list. An e-reader is a great way to cut down on baggage.
10. Canvas Tote or Small Backpack
You need something to lug around books, notebooks, water, pens and more to and from the yoga studio. At Blue Osa, you also have the opportunity to participate in excursions on your free days. A small bag for personal belongings will definitely come in handy.
If you’re sharing a room, then consider bringing earplugs and perhaps even a sleeping mask. There is typically nothing your instructor can do about a snoring roommate, which is the last thing you want keeping you awake when you have 5:00 a.m. meditation!
12. Water Bottle
This is one of those common-sense items that is so often forgotten. Luckily, I was able to buy a bottle at Blue Osa to stay hydrated during the long yoga sessions.
13. Bug Spray and Sunscreen
The essentials for any tropical getaway! I always recommend finding an all-natural product or learning how to make your own.
To document all of the wonderful memories you are about to create! If you are new to photography, we have some great tutorials for beginners on our blog.
It gets dark around 6:00pm; after this time, you should have a flashlight to avoid any creepy-crawly jungle encounters. There is one flashlight in the rooms at Blue Osa, but bringing an extra can be helpful since you’ll have a roommate.
We suggest a tablet is typically a nice choice as it is convenient for taking notes and keeping in touch without being too bulky. But either way, try to bring a laptop or computer if you would like to work on the self-study portion of the training while you are at Blue Osa.
Keep in mind that the jungle is humid, and humidity and electronics typically don’t pair well. You probably won’t have any problems in only 30 days, but consider leaving the newest version of your Macbook at home.
Unless you are from the country you are traveling to, of course!
Don’t get caught in a rainstorm! An umbrella can save you.
19. Proof of a Yellow Fever Vaccine
A Yellow Fever Vaccine is super-important if you are traveling to Costa Rica from South America. I had been in Brazil less than a week prior to my arrival at the Costa Rican border. Luckily, I was able to get a doctor to sign approval that I was safe to enter the country, but this is not a situation you want to gamble with. Border control agents tend to not be very friendly.
20. Make-Up and Toiletries
You won’t need much, especially in terms of make-up. Also remember that most products can be purchased in your destination. (There is a well-stocked supermarket and pharmacy twenty minutes from Blue Osa where you can find basic needs.)
Other than the above items, remember that less is more! A 30-Day Yoga Teacher Training in Costa Rica is an incredible journey that will change your life, so don’t bring excess stuff that just bogs you down!