YOGA FOR SPORT
You don’t even need to be a huge football fan to have seen the image of Mo Salah from the Chelsea match earlier this month…why? Because every yoga student and teacher was tagged in it on social media, shared it with a friend and generally whipped themselves up into a frenzy!
Why then was it so popular?
Quite simply, we saw a current football star using it in a goal celebration! It made a yoga pose very popular in a split second and it evidenced the practice he does alongside training to enable him to play as well as he does.
For those of you who’ve not seen the picture…
There are many current and past sports people who give a yoga a leg up, from Ryan Giggs prolonging his football career to Tiger Woods saying meditation helps him find focus (and hey he just won the Masters!). But us yogis know that it doesn’t really need it; we already know how awesome it is!!
The great thing about yoga is the all-encompassing practice; the ability to take aspects of it off the mat and use throughout the day. Here are just a few ways yoga can help:
Increases strength, flexibility and body awareness
Improves balance, coordination and core control
Reduces the risk of injury and aids recovery
Improves focus and enables a person to find stillness
Increases cognitive function
Improves the ability to deal with stressful situations
Calms the nervous system
Increases lung capacity over time
Allows a person to connect breath with movement in synergy
But hey…don’t take our word for it! Some of our students are using yoga RIGHT NOW to positively impact their sport…
I am currently a professional rugby league player that has been attending yoga sessions for the past 18 months.
Due to ongoing hip, groin and hamstring issues which resulted in me having a double hernia reconstruction, yoga has been the perfect rehabilitation tool. It has helped my flexibility, strength and more importantly the prevention of further injuries. By no means is it easy, to be honest I find it quite difficult but it’s the benefit you feel after the sessions, I get slight burning and tingling sensations through my hips, then the following morning at training I feel so much better and more free within my hips, groins and hamstrings in particular. I would recommend yoga to any professional athlete who takes their body seriously and understands the importance of recovery and injury prevention.
Ryan Brierley, Toronto Wolfpack
I first discovered yoga in 2015, and started practising at Studio One in 2018, I wish I had discovered it much sooner! Having been plagued with soft tissue injuries around my knees and hips in my twenties, practising yoga in my thirties has helped me develop much greater stability, strength and mobility around my joints, which goes hand in hand with the sports that I take part in (Karate and CrossFit). Karate involves a lot of balance, flexibility and speed and much of what we do in the Studio One Flow classes transfer well to this. I also participate in CrossFit, which combines weightlifting, gymnastics and conditioning to raise work capacity. I have found that yoga really helps to control my breathing in time with my movement and also provides a much needed active recovery.
Greg Yates, Physical Development Coach, Crossfit Leyland
I've been practising yoga for 6/7 years and bouldering (climbing) for 2 years. I was first drawn to yoga to help calm anxiety and soon found the many added benefits. My yoga practice made climbing a readily available sport for me and I soon realised they complimented each other perfectly!
Yoga offered increased flexibility, balance and movement on the wall and most of all keeps the mind calm during challenging climbing routes. There are a lot of times in climbing where you can find yourself in complex, twisted positions all while balancing on very small holds, so yoga really does help in every aspect of control on the wall.
In return, climbing helped me to understand how strength building could drive my yoga practice forward and deepen my understanding of muscle recovery and listening to what my body needs.
Katie Winder, Climber