Reading the title you may think that it doesn’t make sense at all, but have you ever tried a workout that combines yoga and strength training? Most people do only one of those and consider the other unnecessary. But they are not aware of the fact that yoga and strength training complement each other perfectly.
Firstly, if you are a beginner, consider starting with just one discipline to get a good foundation, then try incorporating the other into your workout routine. Secondly, don’t avoid going to the gym. Do compound movements such as squats and bodyweight exercises like pullups and dips. These kinds of exercises combined with yoga create balanced muscle mass. Thirdly, choose an authentic type of yoga such as Ashtanga Yoga that provides psychological, emotional and physical benefits. If you’re still not convinced that this is the best type of workout for you, read these 5 reasons why yoga and strength workout are a perfect match.
1. Mind, Body, and Soul
While doing any type of exercise, or anything at all, there is a constant connection between your brain and muscles, which enables body movement according to your will. That constant flow of nerve signals is improved by yoga and it induces responsiveness to these signals. This leads to better reflexes, the flow of the body motion and faster responsiveness to sudden and unexpected situations.
For example, introduce deadlifts to yoga to improve the strength of your back and thighs. This also reduces the risk of back injury even by simple tasks like lifting something, bending down and tieing your shoes. By doing yoga, you also improve your concentration and focus on your work easier. It helps you get to know your body in a way you never expected.
2. Yoga for muscle recovery
In case you didn’t know, your muscles develop after training, not during. Strength training is a strenuous physical activity, so make sure you “give” your muscles time to recover after it. This process of recovery is the time when muscle growth happens.
To help your post-workout process of rehabilitation, consider relaxing yoga exercises for weight lifters. This type of yoga includes exercises that are easy and relaxing, especially for the arms, back, and shoulders after a weightlifting training.
3. Aggression control and relaxation
In strength training such as weight lifting, it’s good to use progressive loading, so you need to get psyched up before starting your workout. Lifting heavier weights each training help yu develop aggression control.
This can be also applied to yoga. Even if you’re doing challenging poses that make you sweat, with proper breathing techniques, you’ll feel relaxed after it. Breathing exercises also reduce stress and help you achieve mental stability. By mastering them through yoga, you will surely be more relaxed during strength training and at the end of it.
4. Flexibility, Mobility, and Strength
If you’re looking to develop flexibility and tone your muscles, yoga is a way to go. It also helps you slim down if you gain weight easily. But for some people who are trying to build a muscle mass, natural strength that comes from yoga isn’t enough. In these cases, strength training is recommended and necessary.
There are two groups of muscles you need to work on- agonist and antagonist. The first one causes the movement while the second one opposes it by slowing it down. Antagonist muscles are also in charge of the speed of the movement. To increase the strength, you need to work on coordination and flexibility of these muscles. While doing weight lifting exercises make sure you’re using a multi-functioning fitness bench to evenly load all the muscles of your body. High-quality benches like these also prevent possible injuries by fixing your body posture.
5. Yogi Diet and Weight lifting
While doing your weight lifting workout, besides sticking to a protein-packed diet, consider starting yogi-diet as it can be beneficial for you as well. It includes eating alkaline foods that improve blood circulation, strengthen the heart and reduce your body’s acidity. Consider cutting down extra carbs and processed sugar and instead of them add immune-boosting herbs and spices such as ginger.
An essential part of yogi nutrition is food rich in Omega-3 acids which are, besides proteins and carbohydrates, the main source of energy. They are easy to digest and help you go through your strength training program.
Experiment with your workout routine and with the way you combine strength training and yoga. Keep in mind that everyone has a different body type and goal. What worked for somebody might not work for you and vice versa. Set up a routine in one discipline and gradually incorporate the other. Read the signs your body is sending you and do what’s best for it. By mixing the best of both worlds you’re one step closer to reaching your ultimate goal. So what are you waiting for?