There is something of a stereotype within the world of yoga in regards to how this is a predominantly female practice. However, when we look back to the roots of yoga, it was actually an activity exclusively for men! The misconception of yoga being more about flexibility than it is about strength is certainly partially to blame here.
These days, more and more men are taking to the mat, and the benefits to them of doing so are not to be overlooked! Let’s take a closer look at how men can boost their health through regular yoga practice.
Building muscle is a popular fitness aim among men. However, when muscle building is undertaken in the gym, it is likely that certain muscle groups are being targeted more than others. Yoga calls for all of the muscles in the body to be engaged, and can therefore provide a more comprehensive workout. This can lead to better all-round muscle gain, especially if done in conjunction with a gym routine.
Decreased Risk of Injury
As a man develops their yoga practice, they will be better equipping their bodies to avoid injury. This is largely because yoga requires parts of the body to be engaged that generally aren’t used in day to day activities. As these body parts continue to be used through regular yoga practice, strength develops and these parts are less at risk of being damaged. This helps to prevent minor injuries from accidents and over-use.
Research has shown that yoga has great potential for boosting cardiovascular and respiratory function. When this is considered in addition to enhanced muscle strength, the potential for better stamina exists. This is something that will develop over time and can have a knock-on effect on how well other sports and physical activities can be performed.
Yoga is thought to be incredibly effective when it comes to weight loss. Several studies have suggested that this is largely because of how yoga can reduce levels of stress hormones in the body. High levels of stress hormones can cause the body to retain additional fat, especially in the abdominal area. As weight is lost, muscle tone will become more evident and easier to develop with ongoing training.
With all of these great advantages to practicing yoga, it is exciting that many more men are beginning to embrace yoga as a regular feature in their lives.