As every great trainer will tell you, cross-training for your sport of choice is essential to reach peak performance and improve results. Of course it’s important to practice, drill and prepare for competitions, races and games. Adding a ‘new’ training or exercise routine to your workout will help you build strength, agility and flexibility in every area of your body, reducing muscle fatigue and leading to a more balanced and healthy body.
Looking for more powerful legs, increased stamina or better flexibility? Consider adding yoga to your workouts. Yes, yoga. Maybe you think yoga is an excuse to slack off and take a nap. I was pleasantly surprised to discover how yoga could provide a major workout and leave you spent similar to a personal training session or spin class (and as sweaty too). Did you know there are fourteen (14!) different styles of yoga, including these styles:
- Hatha – a physical yoga practice, which is pretty much all yoga. Typically a basic and classical approach to yogic breathing exercises and postures.
- Ashtanga – features six established and strenuous pose sequences practiced sequentially as progress is made. Poses move rapidly with each inhale and exhale.
- Vinyasa or ‘Power Yoga’ – An active, athletic style adapted from the traditional ashtanga system in the late 1980s.
- Bikram or ‘Hot’ – practiced in a studio at nearly 105 degrees and 40% humidity, this workout is a series of 26 basic yoga postures, each performed twice.
- Iyengar – features props like blocks, straps, harnesses, and incline boards to get you more perfectly into positions.
- Kundalini – features constantly moving, invigorating poses. The fluidity of the practice is intended to release the kundalini (serpent) energy in your body.
Yoga poses – from downward facing dog and warrior poses, to planks, lunges and triangles – provide the stretching and strength needed for any sport. When you do standing yoga poses, your weight shifts across both feet, challenging your ankle and leg muscles to keep you upright and stable. Doing this type of cross-training can build muscular definition in your lower legs, while helping to prevent injury and improving full-body coordination.
Strengthening lower leg pretibial and calf muscles outside of yoga class or other cross-training workouts with ShinTekk provides an incredible advantage to any athlete, runner, or yogi, enabling you to hold poses for longer, kick harder, jump higher, and run faster and longer. Just a few minutes of resisted dorsiflexion exercises with ShinTekk each day will help you build strength and flexibility in your muscles and ligaments of the lower leg to perform better in your sport or other cross-training activities.
Next time you are seeking some alternatives for cross-training, consider a yoga class – and say “Namaste*” to ShinTekk!