There are a ton of benefits to yoga for men that you probably don’t realise. We’re going to cover these today as well as five yoga poses for men that you should be practicing to build strength, boost your mood, and prevent injuries. Sound good?
Benefits of Practicing Yoga Poses for Men
The benefits of practicing yoga really apply equally to everyone but you might be interested to know exactly what these benefits are and how they can apply to your daily life and your existing fitness routine.
Athletes are known for practicing yoga to increase flexibility, strength, and endurance. Yoga asanas work muscles that regular workouts just can’t by stretching and flexing the entire body. This helps not only to build strength but also to prevent injury of core muscles, bones, and ligaments.
Additional benefits of yoga for men include:
- Prevention of heart disease
- Reduced stress and anxiety
- Stronger lungs, providing more oxygen into the body
- Increased libido and sexual performance
- Improved sleep and less insomnia
- Promotes weight loss
- Improves your other workouts
- Helping to relieve lower back pain
Let’s take a look at five yoga poses for men to get you off on the right foot. Practice these poses in this particular sequence or pick your favorites that you feel benefit you most after trying them. Either way, it’s time to get your asana on.
1. Forward Fold Pose
This pose stretches your hips, calves, and hamstrings while strengthening your knees and legs. This is great for relieving tension in your neck and shoulders and can lower blood pressure with regular practice.
- From a standing position with feet hip-width apart, bend forward at the hips and allow your torso to fall towards the floor.
- Bend your knees and grab your ankles or your elbows with opposite hands.
- Let your body fall naturally towards the earth and breathe deeply.
- Be mindful that you are relaxing each part of your upper body and letting gravity take over.
- Gently sway your upper body from side to side or shake your head slowly.
- Hold for 60 seconds and roll your body slowly back up to a standing position.
You might also be interested in our guide on yoga clothes for men.
2. Reclining Big Toe
This pose stretches and strengthens all of the areas that men tend to experience tightness in, focusing on the hamstrings, groin, calves, hips, and thighs. It also strengthens the knees and stimulates the prostate gland.
- Lie on your back and raise your left leg toward the ceiling, your right leg straight and extended along the floor.
- Flex your feet and bend your left knee, pulling it in towards your chest with your hands.
- Hug your knee against your body so you can feel some release in your hip.
- If you have a strap, use this to loop around your left foot and pull it straight again.
- Make sure your right thigh is pressed down against the floor and hold for five breaths before switching and repeating on the opposite side.
3. Half Bow Pose
This asana strengthens your back while stretching your thighs, hips, and shoulders. The Half Bow Pose reduces your risk of back injury due to muscular imbalance as well as opening your chest, allowing you to take in more oxygen.
- Begin by lying on your stomach and stretch your left arm back towards your left foot, palm facing upwards.
- Stretch your right arm straight in front of you and raise your right leg out behind you.
- Bend your left knee with your heel resting towards your rear.
- On inhale, grab the outside of your left ankle with your left hand and then lift your thighs off the floor.
- Continue to breathe slowly and deeply while you sink into this pose, allowing your legs to be pressed both up and back.
- Hold this pose for 30 seconds and then switch to the opposite side.
4. Downward Facing Dog Pose
Even if you’re not super familiar with yoga, this is probably one pose that you have heard of. This asana is great for strengthening your core as well as your arms and legs and gives you a full-body stretch. Downward Facing Dog can also provide relief for back pain and tightness in the hips and hamstrings
- Begin on your hands and knees, your hands, knees, and feet all hip-width apart.
- Press down firmly through your hands, your fingers spread wide and lift your knees off the floor, with your legs as straight as possible.
- To lengthen and sink into the pose, walk your hands a few feet forwards and your legs a few feet backward.
- Push your thighs towards the back wall and press your heels back and down towards the floor.
- Let your head and neck relax and your shoulder blades down.
- Make sure your stomach muscles are engaged and hold your gaze downwards.
- Breathe deeply and hold for up to three minutes.
5. Bridge Pose
This is another asana that you have definitely heard of. While a standard bridge may be done in different ways, a Bridge Pose focuses on stretching your hips, spine, neck, and chest while providing relief to lower back pain. This pose is great for heightening your overall performance in any physical activity as well as opening up the chest and improving lung capacity.
- Lie on your back with your knees bent, keeping your feet flat on the floor, hip-width apart.
- Place your arms alongside your body on the floor, palms down.
- Inhale and lift your hips up towards the ceiling, making sure your knees are directly over your heels.
- To really sink into this position, bring your arms underneath your body and interlace your fingers, putting pressure on your shoulders and the backs of your arms.
- Continue to lift up your hips, squeezing your buttocks in to provide that extra support and lift.
- Hold for 45 seconds, allowing your hips to move higher with each breath.
Yoga Poses for Men: The Facts
At the end of the day, yoga is for anyone who wants to connect their body and mind, while experiencing some awesome physical and mental benefits. Practicing yoga is a fantastic workout on its own and only improves any additional workout that you may do. So, why not give it a try?