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Effective Ways To Combine Yoga And Exercise
Jan 2019
Adena Muncey
Certified Yoga Practitioner

Yoga, by itself, is a complete workout for the body and mind. It encompasses asanas or physical postures, pranayama or breath work and meditation. But yoga can also help supplement and improve other athletic endeavours. If you are a runner or a cyclist, you know the joy you experience when your lungs and heart pumps oxygen and blood throughout your body and when you make your muscles work hard, each time you go on a run or a ride.

Running and cycling increases bone density strengthens your heart and muscles, lowers blood pressure and improves mental health. But yoga can be practiced to complement running or cycling by stretching/strengthening the muscles in your lower body that shorten and tighten while running/biking. Strengthening these muscles will also help prevent injuries from the impact of running and the repetitive nature of cycling. Yoga can help you access deeper breath control to facilitate longer, faster workouts. Moreover, yoga can help calm your mind when you’re fatigued or about to give up.

Here is a sample yoga workout that can be practiced after your run/ride that can help to re-lengthen your muscles and mitigate muscle soreness:

Down Dog
This asana stretches the entire back of the body and strengthens the arms and shoulders. As a mild inversion, it helps to bring blood out of the lower body, back to the heart. Hold the posture for 30-60 seconds.