The 5 Best Yoga Wheels Compared
You may have noticed a fairly new piece of equipment on the scene that has become increasingly popular, namely the Yoga Wheel. Rapidly establishing itself as a must-have tool to aid practice, respected yogis and yoga-loving celebrities alike can’t get enough of it. But is just a new trend that will pass once something else comes along or is it here to stay?
Although you may have heard of the yoga wheel at classes or seen it in magazines, it might not be overly clear what it is and how it can boost your practice. In addition, there are lots of yoga wheels out there now to choose from which can make it hard to pick the right one for you.
What Exactly is a Yoga Wheel?
In the long history of Yoga, the yoga wheel is a relatively new invention. Designed by the founder of Dharma Yoga, Sri Dharma Mittra, initially in 2015 it is a circular shaped prop that can aid in your daily practice.
Similarly, to other props such as blocks or towels, it can really help in getting safely into certain asanas you may usually struggle with. I really like this feature as it opens up your yoga practice to postures you may have long since written off. Although the original yoga wheel was made and sold direct by Sri Dharma Mittra (of Dharma Yoga fame), there are now many different wheels to choose from.
How to Use a Yoga Wheel
Yoga wheels can be used in a variety of ways. The main feature that yogis find it may help with is any asanas that involve backbends. By placing the wheel under the arch of your back, it offers support to allow you to gently and safely move into postures such as camel or crab.
Although this is the most popular way of using this as a prop, it can also be very handy when holding any postures that involve placing weight on the forearms. Positions such as the scorpion or various plank asanas can be too challenging for some but using a yoga wheel carefully could solve this problem. The trick here is to hold the yoga wheel with your hands while you move into the posture – the added bonus is that you also have the upper surface of the tool to place your feet on also for extra support.
Additional advantages of yoga wheels include being able to increase your flexibility and balance with them. By holding it with both hands and using it to help in things such as forward stretches, you can really feel it opening up the front of your body naturally. Once you are used to it and at the right stage in your yoga journey, then you can even try balancing on top of it to improve your stability when in normal asana’s.
If you’re still wanting a bit more information on how to use this prop then check out this fantastic video. Yogi Nora runs through some great exercises there to give you a taste of what this could do for you.
The Benefits and Drawbacks of Using a Yoga Wheel
At first glance, many people may wonder if it’s worth spending the money on this type of tool especially if you are new to yoga. However, the benefits using a yoga wheel really can make it something you will use regularly.
Firstly, it can stop any frustration at not being able to get into a certain asana or hold them deeply enough which will make your practice and yoga journey more pleasurable. Not only can it help you do this but it can also give you a gentler, safer way of doing it with extra support. That would certainly have come in useful the first time I was trying to go into the camel pose!
The wheel can also be used to massage and stretch key areas of your body such as the chest and spine which is great for overall health. This ability to help rejuvenate and work on the whole body is what makes it a very helpful and flexible piece of equipment to have.
In terms of drawbacks, the main one is that it will cost you money! Although there are some less expensive models, it will still be something you have to pay to own. If you do not use it regularly or maybe only practice a few simple poses at home now and then, you may feel it would be a waste of your money.
In addition, anyone who cannot hold certain postures or cannot hold asana’s too deeply may feel this is not for them. As the wheel is designed to help go into positions more deeply or get into ones you can’t presently, the drawback could be potential discomfort or injury for these yogis. This would include anyone with a bad back for example who has to be very careful when practicing.
Another point that relates to the above is that you have to be careful when using the wheel in general practice so you don’t overstretch or go too deep into a posture. Injuries are quick to arrive and a long time to heal so please be careful if you do begin to use one especially to start with.
What to Look For In A Yoga Wheel
The most important thing to look for in this product is that it is well-designed and well-made. It should be solid and constructed to a high-standard. Specifically, the foam that goes around the wheel should be thick and comfortable to lie on.
Of course, you will want to have one that fits within your price range but that shouldn’t be a problem as there is a wide range of choice now. Also, you may like to think about the look of the wheel you are considering – if you are taking it into your class, you want something funky that will impress!
Do I Really Need to Use One?
The simple answer to this question is no. Many people enjoy a long and active yoga journey without using any props or tools to aid them. However, like most things we can use to help us, you may just find that choosing to include one in your practice is the best thing you ever did.
If you think of the yoga wheel in the same way as the block prop, it may make it easier to wrap your head around. It’s really there to make your yoga practice more enjoyable and help out if you are having trouble getting into a posture or holding one when you are there. As well as this it can be used to help stretch out and keep your body supple as already discussed.
Our Yoga Wheels Reviews
Now we know what a yoga wheel is and why it might be something you are interested in using, you may want to run out and grab one right away. The choice on offer though can make it hard to pick out the ideal one for yourself. Although they may all appear the same, each wheel will have its own qualities and suit different people.
We take a look at the five best yoga wheels to buy and help make your practice even better:
UpCircleSeven Yoga Wheel
The UpCircleSeven is a great choice if you have never used one before. Extremely comfortable to use, the soft foam feels great on your back or arms when in pose. I really like the look of this wheel and the way it helps you easily get into any posture you fancy, safely and with little fuss.
Although no printed instruction card or booklet is included with it, this will not present a problem unless you are totally new to yoga. The wheel can dig into your hands a little also when holding it in certain poses so this is something to be aware of too. Overall though this is a fantastic yoga wheel and one that will greatly enhance your practice.
- Very well-made and sturdy.
- The foam covering is very comfortable and supportive
- Looks great and has a fresh, cool feel to it
- No instruction booklet is included with this wheel.
- One of the more expensive yoga wheels
- Sides of wheel can dig into your hands in certain poses
Sukhamat Yoga Wheel
Made from eco-friendly PC alloy, the Sukhamat wheel not only looks fab but does its bit for the environment too! One of the big advantages of this particular wheel for me is the higher weight it’s designed to bear, making it very sturdy.
The foam cushioning is very nice too and makes this a real pleasure to use in class or at home. If you like to have something a bit different than other people also, the wooden interior trim of this wheel may appeal to you. It may not be the one for you if you’re looking to spend a little less and the foam, while comfortable, could give a better grip but it is still a fine piece of equipment.
- Has been tested to take up to 500lbs in weight.
- Very comfortable to use due to the high-quality foam cushioning
- Cool wooden finish on the interior
- The foam cushioning is less grippy than others
- Grips on the side of the wheel are not easy on the hands
- Not the cheapest on the market
Dharma Yoga Wheel
The yoga wheel was actually invented by Sri Dharma Mittra as we have already noted so why not go to the direct source for your wheel? Offering complete authenticity, this is light-weight and very easy to transport around wherever you may be practicing. I love the fact that this wheel comes from the founder of Dharma Yoga and you can tell it’s a quality product from the look and feel of it.
Although it doesn’t bear as much weight as other wheels on sale, this may not be an issue for you if you are not too heavy. The main drawback with this particular wheel for people could be the price as, when you take the shipping cost into account, it is one of the more expensive out there.
- The original wheel, direct from the inventor Sri Dharma Mittra
- Lightweight so it is very easy to move
- The seam where the foam mat covering meets the actual wheel can come loose
- Can only take weight up to 250lbs
Peace Yoga Wheel
The great thing about yoga is that it attracts people of all ages and this wheel may be the right one for the younger people amongst us. The bright, funky colours you can get it in make it the ideal choice for that sector. The other amazing thing about this wheel is the lower price – it means that if you are just testing the water, you won’t have to spend a lot of money to do so.
Of course, the lower price means that it is maybe not quite as durable as more expensive wheels but this is still a good choice especially for new yogis.
- Wheel comes in a range of bright colors
- Lower price compared to most in this list.
- Looks great and has a fresh, cool feel to it
- May not be as durable as other wheels.
- Will snap if there is too much weight.
Seigla Yoga Wheel
The Seigla Yoga Wheel is a fabulous example of this type of prop – not only for the ease of use but also the anti-microbial material the foam covering is made from. This will keep the wheel in tip-top shape for the whole period you use it. I personally feel that this has the look and feel of a dearer wheel so, for the price, it is a brilliant yoga wheel.
A real bonus with this tool is the brochure included that gives information on how to use it and various poses you can go into with it. Any taller people who can find some wheels a little small for them will love this one as it caters to this specific need perfectly. It has to be said that, while the wheel is well-made, the outer shell looks a little fragile so you need to be careful not to damage that. The 200lbs weight guide is quite low also so pay attention if you weigh in at more than that. I think this is a fine example of a yoga wheel though and would certainly enhance anyone’s practice.
- Great size for taller person.
- Included brochure is very helpful
- made from anti-microbial material
- Fairly low weight limit of around 200lbs
- Outer shell of the wheel does not look overly strong – be careful not to drop anything heavy on it that may dent it.
Any of the wheels we have looked at above would make a great additional tool to help improve your yoga practice. But which one is my personal favorite?
Taking everything into account, the one I like best is the UpCircleSeven wheel for a variety of reasons. Firstly, the popularity of this specific wheel gives you peace of mind that it is a well built, quality product if you haven’t tried it already. Secondly, I just love the look of it and that makes me want to use it regularly.
In addition, it is easy and comfortable to use which means it does the job you are buying it for. I really like how it gives you the option to hold asana’s more deeply or get into poses you may have struggled with before. Even rolling it under your back feels great as it massages your spine! For the price, it offers great value for money for the tremendous product you get.
Although yoga wheels may at first look like a trendy new fad that will soon disappear, the popularity and amount of yogis using them would suggest otherwise. On closer inspection, they are a great tool to help enhance yoga practice that everyone can benefit from, whether you are a new student or more experienced.