It’s a peculiarity of western culture that yoga is practiced primarily by women. Here, it’s often thought that men do sports and women do things like yoga and stretching. Ironically, many men have reported that their first yoga class has often ‘kicked their ass’ and that it requires a lot more strength than they imagined. In its origin countries, yoga was largely done by men, not women. The yogi masters and students were men. The movement of yoga over to the western world translated well in every respect except the target audience: women became the majority of yoga students. So men, listen up and take note, as there are a wide range of health benefits for you:
The Manly Goals and Benefits of Yoga
The goals of yoga are to increase strength, flexibility and mind-body balance. Most men underestimate the importance of flexibility and default to focusing primarily on strength. Truth is, both are needed for an optimum body and active lifestyle. Yoga’s ability to strengthen and soften are specifically beneficial for men:
- Creates longer, leaner muscles and posture
- Eliminates lactic acid in your body which can build up in the thighs and legs
- Releases stress for men who may otherwise internalize or not let go of problems
- Helps athletes get more flexibility and helps improve stamina and bio-mechanics
- Helps the body recover from injuries or prevent them in the first place
- And bonus, yoga helps your performance in the bedroom
The Typical Male Catch 22
Many men don’t do yoga because they worry that they won’t be very good at it because they aren’t very flexible. But the best way to get flexible is to actually do yoga! Most men would benefit from a consistent yoga practice. At minimum, it should be used in conjunction with other workout activities or sports. Don’t let common misconceptions get in the way of becoming the healthy, strong, flexible man you were meant to be.
Not limited to men who sport man-buns
Shaquille O’Neal, former NBA player
LeBron James, forward for the Miami Heat
Ray Lewis, linebacker for the Baltimore Ravens
Robert Downey, Jr
Jon Bon Jovi
…the list goes on.
If you’re new to yoga or to Root, feel free to stop by, get a tour and enjoy the equal-opportunity benefits of this amazing exercise. Our yoga instructors are colorful, vibrant, thoughtful, considerate, and everything in between. Check out their profiles here.