Yoga is the Yin to your CrossFit Yang
Written by Heidi Fearon
Has the idea of yoga at your favorite CrossFit box piqued your interest? I wanted to take a few moments to share how I feel yoga can not only benefit your CrossFit practice but also your life. You might be surprised at how much common ground there is between yoga and CrossFit.
BREATHING: Yoga is a practice linked entirely to the breath. Establishing a full even rhythmic breathe is the first tenant of Yoga. This translates beautifully to all of the elements of CrossFit, from Olympic lifting to conditioning, and will really improve your performance if you can master balanced breathing. It will also translate to a more peaceful mind.
FOCUS: More challenging poses and balancing postures require complete attention and balanced breath. Your focus is drawn completely to the present moment and allows for a deep awareness of all the subtleties of your physical body and your mind. Holding a strenuous posture while your hamstrings plead for relief creates a perfect opportunity to acknowledge your mental process, breath through it, and do more than you thought was possible.
MOBILITY: Yoga, when coupled with the strength development of CrossFit, can help your body achieve the perfect balance of stability and flexibility. Many criticisms of yoga are for the hyper-mobility it can promote. Some may criticize CrossFit for the rigidity and tense muscles it creates. The two together can be the ultimate marriage of suppleness and strength. You can achieve greater stability through flexibility and vice versa. The strongest snatch requires stable but flexible shoulders and how can you truly explore the depth of your squat without spacious, happy hips?
Why just today after a heavier deadlift I breathed some life back into my lower back with cobra pose and camel pose under the guidance of Dave Lipson (thank you Dave!!), what an amazing complement.
Finally, in this fast paced hectic world we live in, we can all use a little cortisol reduction and stress relief. Sunday is a perfect day to hit the reset button before another full week, so come join us for some CrossFit focused yoga. Poses will focus on open hips, stable shoulders, balance, and lengthening the front side of the body (hip extension/back bends). I hope to see you on Sunday!