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What’s in Your Yoga Bag? with Erich Schiffmann

[ 16 ] May 9, 2012 |

erich schiffmann's yoga bag

Erich Schiffmann is cool as hell. Truly. When he enters a room, his friends — warmth and comfort — always come along. If you know yoga, you know Erich’s name and you’ve likely read his illuminating book, Yoga: The Spirit and Practice of Moving Into Stillness. He has recorded all of his classes and meditations for the last 15 years (!!!) and offers them generously and freely. In a nutshell, Erich is mindful, masterful, and mellow. All you need to know, is that he was wearing these on the day we cracked open his yoga bag:

erich schiffmann wears vintage red adidas

I told you he was cool.

What’s in his yoga bag? A schmacker (his fun term for the bowl mallet), a made-just-for-him Manduka Black Mat PRO (10+ years old and still looks fresh), a Persian rug, and a five pound lemon…

erich schiffmann's bag manduka luminaire missoni ipod iphone zen meditation bowl

I’m not sure I’ve ever met a more beloved teacher — most of the items Erich carries with him were gifts from students. One lovely woman brings plumeria blossoms to every class and places them on the mats of each student! She gave Erich the rose you see above. The Persian rug was also a present. Gifted to him by a sweetly generous senior gentleman, Erich now brings the rug along with him for every class.

You can’t see them, but you’ll delight in knowing that his mat has lines he drew on to keep his own alignment in check. Even masters need reminders! His iPod holds a wide variety of music, including Rasa, Lenny Kravitz, and Playing For Change’s “Redemption Song.” I picked up his brightly striped towel to peek at its label and murmured, “Ooh, Missoni.” Erich cocked his head and said, “That means nothing to me. Is that good?” and made the most charming quizzical face you’ve ever seen.

a huge lemon and avocados, gifts from a student

Pulled from a sunny yellow shopping bag, were these fresh-from-a-student’s-garden avocados and yoga-block-sized lemon. Also in the bag: organic dip made for Erich. Wow and yum! Two more things…

tie dye bando hair band and Erich's gold bling ring

Erich is currently working on four books, teaching at Exhale’s Center for Sacred Movement in Venice, CA, and “totally having fun.”

“Don’t decide in advance what you’re supposed to do. Get on line and listen for guidance. Dare to give expression to it!” — Erich Schiffmann

What’s in Your Yoga Bag with Erich Schiffmann:

1. black mat pro - manduka // 2. superstrap (with quick-release buckle) – yoga props // 3. shoulder bag - luminaire // 4. persian rug // 5. yoga bag – manduka // 6. zen meditation singing bowl – tassajara zen center // 7. striped jazz hand towel – missoni // 8. bottled water – exhale’s center for sacred movement // 9. ipod // 10. pcm-d50 portable professional recorder – sony // 11. men’s keeper bag – pendleton // 12. schmacker // 13. iphone // 14. rose

you can find erich at

click for more what's in your yoga bag

Category: accessories

Comments (16)

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  1. Digging this look inside the bag – feeling very peepish! Love Erich and hoping to attend his workshop in Ohio later this year!!

  2. I want a Persian rug in my yoga bag!

    The first VHS Yoga tape I got & had for a very, very long time was Ali Magraw’s which features Erich. Now I have it on DVD and I revisit it every once in awhile like an old friend. I love his voice and teachings.


    • lo says:

      VHS! taking it back to the old skool. :) i love that it brings you comfort and happiness to watch it — i do the same with my 90s yoga DVDs.

  3. Arthur Klein says:

    Awesome article about Erich’s stuff… BTW the .mac resource is being removed by Apple Corp. soon… You can access Erich’s Digital (Video, Audio, etc) at his new website BIGmind online.

    in Love Light & Peace,

  4. arlene johnson says:

    Love this! My favorite part of every Erich class (and it’s hard to choose, really) is watching him walk into the room, slooowly unpack his bag, lay out his mat, rug, and bowl, then take time to look at those gathered before him — really SEE each student’s face, smile, many times a wave.

    That right there is the practice in action. Thanks, Erich, “Your Awesomeness!”

  5. Arthur Klein says:

    Please come by Erich’s new BIGmind Online site and say hello also check out our thank you post to namastilo at many talks audio video print etc. also gift to members of Y Yoga Movie this month…


  6. So says:

    Striped “jazz hands” towel! :-P

  7. Tui says:

    I really love whats in your yoga bag-posts! :) It’s always fun to see what people carry around and I think it can tell quite a lot about the Person who’s bag is being opened!

    • lo says:

      I love that you love them! And I agree wholeheartedly, you can tell so much about a person by what they keep close by. :) Many more of these to come!

  8. mandy says:

    Love this! I am always so curious as to what people are carrying around with them…does this make me weird? It’s like touring their house, love that too:)

    • lo says:

      not at all! join the club. ;) aside from being both fun and interesting, it’s also helpful to know what teachers who have been teaching + practicing for years carry around with them. = insider info.