Guest Post: How yoga can give you superior muscle strength
Whether you are a footballer, rugby player, gymnast, or other kind of athlete, strength and stamina will play an important part in your performance.
Obviously, exactly how and when you need to draw on these qualities will vary depending on your individual discipline.
Whether you opt for a gentler type of yoga, or one of the more vigorous forms of the exercise, you will improve your core muscle strength immeasurably. No other exercise offers such a unique blend of stretching, balancing and power and this was something I learned very quickly when I first joined Samsara Mind and Body.
Yoga also focusses intensely on the way in which you use your muscles and aims to help you learn how to move properly. For example, you may be able to touch your toes but are you actually bending from your tailbone, or are you hauling yourself over from the middle of your back? Yoga can help you how to re-learn how to move and stretch and in doing so cannot just improve your strength, but also protect you from future injury.
Without using weights, the idea of building muscle may seem ludicrous but yoga uses different means in order to strengthen. The weight of your body acts as your resistance, making weights unnecessary. Balancing poses take extreme muscle control to stay upright; especially when held and not just adopted momentarily. By taking the speed out of the movements and gradually easing through each set of poses, muscular strength is built up. This is because there is no momentum to help ‘carry you through’ instead; you have to rely purely on your muscles to achieve each posture.
Harriet is a blogger, 52 diet fanatic and yoga nut. You will often find me down-dogging in one of London’s beautiful parks or sat at my desk dreaming about what I will do when I become a millionaire.
Kristin McGee is a celebrity yoga and Pilates instructor in New York City. She is the star of over 100 videos, a contributing editor at Health Magazine and a spokeswoman for many brands and causes she believes in. Kristin also appears frequently on television. A proud mom to three, she sure keeps herself busy!