The benefits of yoga in sport
November 27, 2014
Yoga and sport were once seen as opposites: the calm and quiet nature of yoga contrasted with the implicit competition of sport. Nowadays, much more familiar with yoga, we have turned it into a standard in our culture, assimilating – in general rules – much of its philosophy and understanding it as an excellent tool for anything we do, including sports.
- We develop breathing techniques while improving balance, flexibility, strength, and endurance. A deep and relaxed breath is the starting point in the fight against anxiety during training (and during life!). Yoga helps us work on the habit of breathing correctly.
- Yoga promotes rehabilitation in case of injury, and even prevents it.
- Perhaps the most fundamental: the ability to integrate mind and body in practice is extremely beneficial for those who play sports.
- Improves “core” strength. Slow, focused movements strengthen the midsection of the body.
- Increases flexibility and range of motion. Yoga routines incorporate slow and constant flexibility exercises that relieve muscle tension, essential to improve our performance.
- Improves balance. Many athletes overlook balance exercises. It's typical to develop one side more than the other by lifting weights, for example. Yoga can fix these imbalances.
- Yoga is great for cross training. Cross training is necessary for those who train in the same discipline all year. Interspersing it with yoga poses reduces the chance of injury and boredom, and helps you recover from intense aerobics or strength training.