Subscribe to receive informative blogs weekly!

Your email:

YogaPaws

yoga paws coupon

Search all blog topics here:

YogaPaws Blog for Beginner Poses and Postures

Current Articles | RSS Feed RSS Feed

Yoga For Men: 10 Yoga Poses For Strength And Flexibility

  
  
  
  

You love yoga when it's for your girlfriend or wife... but how about Yoga for the guy?  Men, it's time to recognize that the same way that Yoga can aid the female in your life, it's especially great for men.  Here's why:

However, anyone who has attented a yoga class lately can tell you yoga isn't a ladies-only thing. A new Harris poll commissioned by Yoga Journal suggests that men now make up 23 percent of America's 15 million enthusiasts. In fact, guys that take one yoga class per week or doing a couple of pre-workout poses can increase endurance, build strength, prevent injuries, and may even stave off heart disease.

How? "Men often suffer from tightness particularly in the hips, hamstrings, and shoulders that can lead to injury or weakness," says Baron Baptiste, creator of Baptiste Power Vinyasa Yoga and former assistant coach with the Philadelphia Eagles. "Over-training in any one sport can cause repetitive stress and other more serious injuries. Yoga is a full-body workout that creates both strength and flexibility. You need to have both. One without the other is a recipe for disaster." Not sure where to start? Practice these 10 poses in this order, which Baptiste says benefit men because they stretch out guys' tightest spots (like the shoulders and hips, and groin) and strengthen muscles that get no love during workouts (like the low back and knees).  whether you want to do yoga on the bike trail or find yourself slipping in class.  We recommend YogaPaws (The Yoga Mat You Wear) to keep you locked safely and comfortably in each pose.  0c77e6b6-3d92-437e-aa92-f30d68274daa

 

 

Forward Bend, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners

Forward Fold 

Stretches hamstrings, calves, and hips; strengthens legs and knees

Stand with feet hip-width apart, gently hinge forward at the hips and lower the torso toward the floor. Bend your knees generously to take any pressure out of the low back and hamstrings. Grasp opposite elbows with opposite hands. Breathe deeply and let gravity take the body toward the earth. Relax your head, neck, shoulders and torso. Slowly sway your torso or gently shake your head. Hold for one minute and roll back up to standing.

Why it's good for you: This is a great move to use as part of a warm-up for any workout.

We often have a hard time knowing when we are holding excess tension in our head, neck and shoulders, and that buildup of tension can create headaches, insomnia, poor circulation and decreased lung capacity. If you practice slow, steady breathing along with this pose, it can lower your blood pressure over time.

Downward-Facing Dog 

Stretches feet, shoulders, hamstrings, and calves; strengthens arms, legs, and core

Start on your hands and knees with your feet and knees hip-width apart. Position your hands about shoulder-width apart, and spread your fingers wide. Pressing firmly through your hands, lift your knees off the floor and straighten your legs. (If you have tight hamstrings, a gentle bend in the knees is fine). Walk your hands forward a few inches, and walk your feet back a few inches to lengthen the pose. Squeeze your thighs as you press them toward the back wall. Press your heels back and down toward the floor (though they might not reach the floor). Relax your head and neck and let your shoulder blades slide down your back toward your feet. Set your gaze between your feet. Suck your stomach in and engage your core muscles. Breathe deeply. Hold for three minutes, rest, and repeat one more time.

Why it's good for you: We often experience back pain due to chronic tightness in the hamstrings and hips. It's also common for us to have very tight shoulders. Down Dog releases those areas, while building upper body strength. If you can do only one pose a day, start with Downward Dog.

Downward Facing Dog, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners
Chair Pose, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners

Chair 

Stretches shoulders and chest; strengthens thighs, calves, spine, and ankles

Stand up tall with your big toes touching. Inhale and raise your arms straight up to the ceiling alongside your head and neck with palms facing each other. Drop your shoulders down your back as you lengthen up through the neck. As you exhale, bend your knees, sit down and back as if you were sitting in a chair (like doing a squat with your feet together). Do not let your knees extend past your toes. With each inhale lengthen the spine. With each exhale sit a little deeper in the chair. Eventually your thighs will be parallel to the floor. Drop your tailbone down toward the floor to take any stress out of your lower back. Keep your core muscles engaged and keep your knees and thighs pressed tightly together. Hold for 30 seconds.

Why it's good for you: No gym necessary! Chair pose torches abdominal fat while strengthening the thighs and legs.

Crescent Lunge 

Loosens tight hips by stretching the groin; strengthens arms and legs

Start on your hands and knees. Step your right foot between your hands into a lunge, keeping your right knee directly above your heel. Inhale and slowly lift your back knee off the floor. Press your back heel toward the wall behind you as you begin to straighten the back leg. Keep your spine long as you hold and breathe. Let your hips fall forward as you continue to press the back heel behind you. Hold for one minute and then repeat on the second side. Do each side twice.

Why it's good for you: Tight hips can cause lower back pain, knee strain, and injury, which can keep you out of the game, out of the gym, and in pain at your desk. Add Crescent Lunge to your pre-workout routine to open the hips.

Crescent Lunge, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners
Warrior Pose, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners

Warrior I 

Stretches shoulders and hips; strengthens upper and lower body

Come into Crescent Lunge with your right foot forward in the lunge. Spin your left toes to face the left side of the room and press your heel down. Your back foot should be parallel with the front of the room. Inhale and reach your arms up alongside your head with your palms facing each other. Drop your shoulders down your back. Bring your torso up and off the front thigh. Don't let your front knee extend past the toes. Both hips should face forward. Hold for one minute. Repeat on the opposite side.

Why it's good for you: Warrior increases space and mobility in areas where men need it most — shoulders, hips, and knees. It's another pose that generates great stability in and around the knee, so increases stability for high-impact workouts.

Bridge 

Stretches chest, neck, spine, and hips

Lie on your back, bend your knees, and place your feet flat on the floor hip-width apart. You should be able to tickle the backs of your heels with your hands. Place your arms on the floor alongside your body, palms down, and as you inhale, lift your hips off the floor and press them to the ceiling. Keep your knees directly over your heels. For an added shoulder stretch slide your arms under your body, interlace your fingers, and press the backs of your arms into the floor as you continue to lift your hips. Hold for 45 seconds and with each breath, let your hips float a little higher. Exhale when you lower your hips. Repeat 3 times.

Why it's good for you: Many men are tight in the intercostal muscles and connective tissue surrounding the rib cage, which can limit lung capacity. Bridge pose opens the chest and releases those tight muscles, allowing for fuller, easier breaths. Over time, practicing this pose can improve performance in all physical activities and is helpful for relieving upper respiratory issues.

Bridge Pose, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners
Bow Pose, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners

Bow Pose 

Stretches hips, shoulders, and thighs; strengthens back

Lie on your stomach and reach your arms back toward your feet with the palms facing up. Bend your knees so that your heels come in toward your buttocks. Inhale and grab the outside of your ankles (right ankle in right hand, left ankle in left hand). Press your ankles into your hands and your hands into your ankles as you lift your thighs off the floor. Breathe deeply and fully as you continue pressing your legs up and back. Hold for 30 seconds and repeat two or three times. If you are very tight in the hips or quadriceps, you may want to try one leg at a time.

Why it's good for you: One of the best stress-busting poses, Bow opens the chest to allow you to take in more oxygen. Strong abs are great, but can lead to injury if you don't strengthen the back, too. Bow pose takes care of this, reducing your risk of injury due to muscular imbalance.

Boat Pose 

Strengthens abs, spine, arms and hip flexors

Sit on the floor with your knees bent and feet on the floor in front of you. Place your hands behind your glutes and lean into the arms for support. Engage your core muscles and keep a perfectly straight spine as you lift your right leg and then the left, bringing them to a 45-degree angle with the floor. Bring your legs together and imagine squeezing a book between your thighs to keep them active. Lift through the sternum and slowly straighten your legs while keeping your torso straight (if it starts to collapse, keep a slight bend in the knees). Press through the balls of the feet and spread your toes wide. Reach your arms toward the front of the room, on either side of your legs, keeping them in line with your shoulders, palms facing down. Hold for 30 seconds, working up to a minute or longer.

Why it's good for you: In addition to strengthening the core and back muscles, Boat promotes healthy thyroid and prostate gland function.

Boat Pose, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners
Hero Pose, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners

Hero Pose 

Stretches knees, ankles and thighs

Begin in a kneeling position with knees touching. Bring your heels out alongside your buttocks, keeping your shins and ankles pressing down into the floor. If you can, sit your buttocks on the floor between your legs. If this is uncomfortable, place a phone book or block beneath you to lessen the tension in the knees and ankles. You will feel a strong stretching sensation, but you should not feel pain. This is a progressive pose and your body will adapt to it over time. Hold for one minute and keep your breath slow and deep. Rest, and repeat a second time.

Why it's good for you: Hero pose stabilizes and strengthens the vulnerable knee joints while lubricating the connective tissues in and around the knee with blood, oxygen, and fluid, making it an essential pose for runners.

Reclining Big Toe 

Stretches hips, thighs, hamstrings, groins, and calves; strengthens the knees

Lie on your back and extend your left leg toward the ceiling at a 90-degree angle with your right leg extended along the floor. Flex both feet. Bend your left knee and bring the knee in toward your chest using your hands. Hug it tightly against your body to relax your hip. Next, loop a strap around your left foot and slowly straighten the left leg back to 90 degrees. Press your right thigh firmly down against the floor. Hold for 5 breaths and repeat on the opposite side. Repeat twice on each side.

Why it's good for you: This pose stimulates the prostate gland and improves digestion. Runners may find it useful for relieving sciatica caused by a tight piriformis.

Finish in Corpse Pose, lying flat on your back with your arms alongside your body. Close your eyes and breathe naturally. Stay here for at least two to three minutes and allow every muscle to melt into the floor beneath you

Reclining Big Toe, Yoga for Men, Yoga Poses for Men, Yoga for Beginners

 

Check YogaPaws out

Comments

Thank you for this incredibly helpful guide. I just did all of the poses and I now have such a surge of energy circulating throughout my being, it's an amazing feeling. I'm going to attempt to commit to a daily routine using these poses.
Posted @ Thursday, December 15, 2011 10:06 PM by Ambrosia
Thanks for the great recommendations - I'm noticing more men in yoga classes these days! I recently wrote a post with 10 Tips for guys to read before their first yoga class. Check it out here: http://ow.ly/8Ptkd
Posted @ Thursday, February 02, 2012 7:35 AM by Jennifer Maguire Coughlin
Great guide, never had been fond of yoga but my girlfriend convinced me to give this a try and truly was relaxing and invigorating. Will be encorporating into my daily routine for sure.
Posted @ Wednesday, May 09, 2012 7:32 PM by Alex
its great reaxing
Posted @ Wednesday, September 19, 2012 7:16 PM by farrukh
very nice
Posted @ Saturday, February 09, 2013 6:28 AM by shail
Great tips for the beginner. Give it a try and it might change your life! Warm wishes, Valencia Mindfulness Retreat.
Posted @ Tuesday, March 05, 2013 6:55 AM by Thijs
10 Yoga poses for men
Posted @ Wednesday, April 03, 2013 6:31 AM by PS
Never having done any Yoga excises the above looks interesting. 
Is thare a Calgary location where I could make enquiries?
Posted @ Saturday, April 20, 2013 2:00 PM by Ed Corson
Sorry we do not have a Calgary location. Here are all the locations in Canada. http://www.yogapaws.com/yoga-retail-stores-yoga-paws/#can 
 
Please let me know if I can help more! Thanks for your interest!
Posted @ Monday, April 22, 2013 1:56 PM by Jamie Getzwiller
Very useful site. I am 74 years old and my body has been stiff for a long time. Recently I fractured my wrist. That has healed, but somehow my body has become more stiff. Great difficulty in tying shoe laces, picking up anything off the floor. I will try your exercises, though I think those which involve sitting on the floor will be impossible for me. 
Any specific exercises for me? I shall be grateful for any advice. 
A.K. Srivastava
Posted @ Tuesday, December 03, 2013 2:42 PM by Anand Srivastava
Hello A.K. Srivastava 
I think I have a video that would be useful for you.:) 
email me at jamieg@yogapaws.com  
 
Thanks! 
JamieG
Posted @ Friday, December 06, 2013 2:19 PM by Jamie Getzwiller
A Great Content. Thank you very much for sharing value blogs for Yoga. And you also include some blogs I read regularly.  
 
Good to see them.
Posted @ Thursday, December 26, 2013 6:18 AM by Julie Wilcox
it good for healty for body and for mind
Posted @ Thursday, January 16, 2014 3:04 AM by gopinathsingh
Post Comment
Name
 *
Email
 *
Website (optional)
Comment
 *

Allowed tags: <a> link, <b> bold, <i> italics