From its beginnings, yoga was a common practice for men. But lately, it seems like classes are primarily comprised of females. Since when did yoga become a chick thing? Somewhere along the way, men began to see yoga as nothing more than stretching and flexibility. Or worse yet, something soft. More and more men have been ditching their mats and feeling uncomfortable to pick up the practice or attend public classes. But that's a total shame.
And in reality, yoga not only sculpts and strengthens men’s bodies, but also benefits everything from inner health to mental sharpness. From preventing game day injuries to increasing lung capacity, yoga results in benefits that are important to all guys. Here are six side effects of yoga that will have men everywhere adding it to their cross-training regimens.
Increase Lung Capacity
With a focus on taking deep, full breaths and postures that stretch your chest and side, yoga can help to increase your lung capacity. This improves your overall endurance with each breath that you take.
The benefits of having a strong core can’t be overstated as a part of a well-balanced fitness program. Your core supports your entire body. Want to relieve back pain? Focus on your core. Need to improve your balance and coordination? Focus on your core. Want to shave time off your run? You guessed it… core.
Hamstrings, knees, shoulders and low back pain rank as some of the most frequent sports injuries. The most common reason for sport-related injuries is overuse and abuse. By focusing on lengthening these overworked muscles, yoga can aid in opening the muscles that hinder performance and can help you recover more quickly after workouts.
Stretch Overworked Muscles
Whether you’re stressed or just completed a rigorous workout, many men carry lots of tension, especially in the chest, shoulders and neck. In addition to helping relieve underlying stress, yoga hones in on these areas of the body and causes them to lengthen and relax.
We live in a busy world. It’s important to take a moment to just breathe and decompress, especially if you happen to have a Type A personality. Not only will you get a killer workout in a yoga class, but you’ll get that workout in a way that keeps you mindful of your body and slows down your breathing. You’ll walk out of class with an unexpected mental clarity that you’ll carry throughout your day.
Yoga is a tough workout! During a class, your instructor will lead you through a carefully-crafted series of poses that are designed to systematically stretch and work every major muscle group. You’ll get a full body workout by the end of class that you’ll definitely feel the next day.