Best Essential Oils for Exercise

ExerciseDo you love exercising, or do you have to drag yourself to the gym every time? Either way, exercise is vital for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. When used on their own, essential oils offer many benefits for the body. When combined with regular exercise and proper eating, essential oils can be a major part of healthy living. For those who want to enhance their workout experience, care for the body pre- and post-workout, and love using natural products, essential oils can be the perfect companion to any exercise routine.  

Whether your exercise routine features heavy lifting, recreational sports, intense cardio, or a dusty hiking trail, you’ll be able to use essential oils to help keep your body at peak performance. 

Keep reading to learn about some of the best essential oils for exercise and how to use them for a more successful, more enjoyable workout.  

Maintaining Feelings of Clear Breathing 

One of the most important elements in a successful workout is the ability to take clear, deep breaths as your heart rate increases. If your breathing is limited, it’ll be difficult to get enough oxygen, and you’ll notice decreased performance during your workout. To maintain feelings of clear breathing during your workout, try using essential oils that are known to promote feelings of clear airways. Consider applying essential oils like Peppermint oil or Eucalyptus oil to your chest and neck before a workout to promote feelings of clear airways. You can also apply an essential oil blend like dōTERRA Breathe® to your chest to create an invigorating vapor and promote feelings of open airways.  

Massaging Muscles 

Whether you’re warming up for an intense workout or trying to recover afterward, it is important to keep your muscles in tip-top shape. Certain essential oils have powerful soothing, warming, and cooling properties that are useful for massaging the muscles before and after a workout. Try massaging essential oils with warming or cooling properties to areas like the legs, feet, arms, shoulders, back, and neck to provide soothing comfort to muscles after physical activity.  

Essential oils with warming properties  

Essential oils with cooling properties  

These essential oils and blends can be applied to the muscles during your warmup or stretching routine to help prepare your body for physical activity. When you’ve finished a workout, you might consider using essential oils as part of a massage to soothe your tired muscles. For many athletes, massage is a regular and vital part of post-workout recovery.  


Hydration is key to overall health, but it’s especially important before, during, and after a workout. Because our bodies lose water when we sweat, it’s vital to replenish the body with water and stay hydrated. Dehydration will weaken your body and can even lead to serious health issues.

Do you have trouble remembering to hydrate before or after your workout? Turn plain water into a refreshing, flavorful beverage with the addition of essential oils. Citrus essential oils like Lemon oil, Lime oil, Grapefruit oil, Wild Orange oil, or Bergamot oil can add a tasty, invigorating flavor to your water. Consider adding a few drops of an oil to your water before a workout to help make sure you get the hydration you need.  

Resting, Relaxing, and Combating Fatigue  

At the end of your workout, once you’ve had a proper cool down, it’s important to rest before your next workout. Your body needs time to recuperate, and a lack of rest between workouts can lead to injuries from overworking the body. By using essential oils with calming and relaxing properties, you can ensure that you get proper rest before your next workout. Here are a few ideas for using essential oils to promote rest and relaxation, as well as fight fatigue between workouts.  

  1. If you’re having a difficult time sleeping, diffuse essential oils like Lavender oil or the dōTERRA Serenity® Restful Blend to help create a relaxing atmosphere in your bedroom, that is conducive to sleep.  
  2. Trying to rest and relax before your next workout? Add a few drops of a soothing essential oil like dōTERRA Balance®, Roman Chamomile oil, Lavender oil, Sandalwood oil, or dōTERRA Serenity to a warm bath to calm the body and relax the mind.  
  3. If you’re feeling fatigued or sluggish when it comes time for your next workout, try using invigorating and essential oils to help you feel awake, focused, and energized. Essential oils like Cypress oil, Lime oil, Peppermint oil, or Wild Orange oil are particularly useful for helping you feel alert and ready for your next workout.  

Looking for more ways to use essential oils for exercise? Check out this free dōTERRA eBook, Essential Oils and Fitness.  

DIY Essential Oil Foot Soak 

After a long run, a lengthy bike ride, or other intense workout, your feet will likely need a little rest. Try this DIY essential oil foot soak for those post-workout days when you need to refresh your feet. 

You will need:  

Hot water  
Epsom salt  
Baking soda  

Try any of these essential oils (or a combination):  

  • Roman Chamomile oil  
  • Peppermint oil  
  • Lavender oil  
  • Rosemary oil  
  • Ginger oil  
  • Clove oil  
  • Lemon oil  
  • Black Pepper oil  


  1. Combine the hot water, a handful of Epsom salts, and a few scoops of baking soda into a tub that’s big enough for your feet.
  2. Add a few drops of your essential oil of choice (or several oils).
  3. Soak your feet for relaxation and relief.