Yoga for Sports
Many athletes are taking to yoga to improve their on-field performance. Yoga has become a proven match-winner in improving athletic performance. Whatever sport you may be practicing, you can be assured that yoga will help you become better at it. Read on to learn more about the efficacy of yoga for sports.
Benefits of Yoga for Sports
- Yoga poses improve body balance and increase the flexibility of the joints and spine.
- Yoga can prevent injuries by strengthening the muscles and increasing flexibility.
- Yoga can improve your endurance, strength, footwork and concentration.
- Pranayama and yoga meditation can improve your concentration and keep you focused.
- Yoga relieves physical and mental stress, enabling you to perform at your peak.
- Yoga is a great for cross-training, which is essential for sports persons who perform the same exercise routine every day.
More Benefits of practicing Yoga for Sports
Flexibility: Yoga gives the best flexibility to the body when compared to any other exercise. All the poses of yoga have an underlying technique that can make your muscles flexible.
Balance: Some indoor games and all the outdoor games need fast response and good balancing power during the game. Lack of balance causes discomfort, leading to failure. All the yoga poses need balance, practicing the poses properly will develop strong balance of the body.
Strength: Yoga increases the overall strength of your body. During the practice of yoga you will use a group of muscles at a time to make a posture, by doing so you stretch and strengthen different muscles. Repetition of the poses will increase the strength of every part of your body.
Mental Focus: Many athletes complain about losing concentration at some point during the game, this can be reduced by practicing yoga regularly. While doing the yoga postures you have to control your breath and twist different bones and muscles, this makes you concentrate on the present moment.
Stress: Yoga for sports is the best way to relieve stress of any order. Many poses refresh the mental and physical nerves that cause stress.
Warrior Pose for Soccer, Running and Racquet Sports
Yoga can help athletes to recover from intense workouts and prepare them for future training sessions. The warrior series of poses can strengthen the legs and open up the hips and body sides. This can benefit athletes in soccer, running and racquet sports. Yoga poses can also increase range of motion and mobility of such joints as ankles, knees and hips.
Backbends for Strength Training and Cycling
Cycling taxes the hip flexors and quadriceps, hence back bending poses can help cyclists as they open up the body front. Downward dog pose and Cobra pose are also useful as they strengthen the shoulders and arms, and improve body posture. Back bend poses like bow and wheel pose increase spine suppleness. They also improve joint flexibility and elongate the muscles.
Yoga Breathing Techniques for Swimming
Yoga and pranayama breathing techniques can benefit swimmers and athletes taking part in endurance sports. These techniques flood the body with oxygen and help mental focus and concentration. Lung capacity is increased and the athlete becomes more energized. At the same time, both body and mind become relaxed. Yoga meditation increases self-awareness and the athlete becomes more aware of his physical and mental limits, which can prevent over-training and stress accumulation.
Yoga for sports is thus a boon for athletes as it can help them to cross-train, reduce injuries, alleviate boredom and add variety to their daily training routine.