Yoga can be quite intimidating for men. Especially when you see pictures all over the internet of these super-bendy women tying themselves up like a pretzel!
However, it’s still important for us males to take care of our bodies in ways others than just hitting the weights room, and you can build a fantastic foundation of strength and flexibility with a just few basic (and easily doable) yoga poses.
I was actually somewhat of a sceptic when it came to yoga – until I visited Thailand. This is where I learned a little bit more about the practice, and I became hooked right away.
A fad doesn’t last over 5000 years!
The reason yoga fits so well into almost any exercise routine is that it allows you to recover faster and improve your performance.
If you couple this with a huge reduction in stress (especially when coupled with meditation, on which I’ve written this step-by-step guide), improved sex drive, and a calmer mind – suddenly the implementation of yoga into your weekly regimen seems like a bit of a no-brainer!
You can read more about the benefits of yoga here.
In this post, I’m going to list a few great yoga poses for men which I use on a regular basis. I try and perform each of these poses for at least a minute every morning, and they really help me tune into my body and set me up for the day.
Let’s get straight into this, shall we?
#1: Yogi Squat
Upon my travels in Asia, I realised that many people actually sit like this while having a conversation.
What shocked me even more is that people go to the toilet like this – many of Asia’s toilets are basically a hole in the ground. Believe it or not, it’s actually the most optimal position in order for your body to ‘clear the bowels’ shall we say!
The reason for this is that squatting is a very natural human position. It was something we were literally built to do. There were no chairs around during the time in which we first became anatomically modern humans!
In the western world, the majority of people spend their lives hunched over, and as a result, we’ve lost the ability to squat properly.
Everybody should be able to squat properly.
This pose is great for rehabilitating the lost range of motion in your back, hips, knees and ankles.
#2: Crescent Lunge
The Crescent Lunge is a fantastic yoga pose for men as it stretches the legs, groin and hip flexors, while also opening up the rib cage, chest and shoulders.
It’s a dynamic standing yoga pose which integrates many of the muscles in your body. It’s a great pose for developing stability and balance.
This is a great one to utilise if you’re the kind of person who sits down all day.
#3: Upward Facing Dog
This is an awesome pose for mobility and flexibility in the back.
However, when it comes to the upward-facing dog pose, less really is more.
Try and feel a nice comfortable extension throughout your entire spine, rather than simply trying to bend your back as much as possible – this can lead to injury.
This pose goes hand-in-hand with the downward-facing dog pose. When coupled together, they will result in great mobility and overall spinal health!
#4: Child’s Pose
The Child’s Pose is one of the best yoga poses for men to perform on a regular basis, due to its effectiveness at preventing and rehabilitating lower back pain.
It lengthens the spine, reducing the effect of ‘slouching’ and makes you less hunched over. Make sure you implement this into your routine – it’ll work wonders for your posture!
#5: Supine Spinal Twist
This is one of my favourite positions, not because it’s particularly challenging (it isn’t), but because of the amazing benefits it offers for your entire posterior chain.
It offers flexibility and stability to the spine, which is incredibly important as our ‘twisting’ capability is often hindered as we get older.
It’s also great for stimulating the kidneys, bladder, intestines and other abdominal organs which are important for overall health.
It’s a great practice which everybody should be doing, regardless of experience or competence.
And there we have it – the best beginner’s yoga poses for men!
Implement these beginner’s yoga poses into your health and fitness regime, guys – you won’t regret it.
From an honest and personal point of view, I wish I’d started yoga sooner. It would’ve helped me avoid a few injuries, that’s for sure. Don’t procrastinate. Don’t wait until you’ve picked up an injury before finally deciding to take care of your body.
If you’re a guy who’s looking to get into yoga, Yoga For Men by Ryan Briggs is a fantastic book to start with! It’s a complete beginners guide which tells you everything you’ll need to know to get started right away.
And if you’re looking for a yoga mat, this is your best option. It’s cheap, it lasts ages and it doesn’t slide around. I’ve been using it for ages.
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I appreciate your time, see you in the next article!