Yoga is an amazing exercise that boosts spiritual and mental wellbeing while also improving flexibility and toning muscle. Regardless of your fitness goals, it’s always beneficial to practice yoga on a regular basis.
However, some people, Jennifer Dixon, the studio owner here at Thrive, believes that yoga is best when combined with other forms of exercise. Combining yoga with pilates, for example, creates an amazing workout. But have you ever considered strength training and yoga? A lot of people think of them as polar opposites because they think that strength training and weights are for people that want to bulk up as much as possible. However, this can be a myth. Afterall, Olympic Lifters are often some of the most flexible athletes. The truth is, adding strength training to your routine alongside yoga can help you get the results that you want.
If you have been following this blog for any amount of time, then you have seen how the Thrive philosophy towards total body wellness includes yoga (of course) Pilates (for sure) but we also include regular focused classes on strength training. If you’re interested in joining us, check out some of the amazing benefits of combining strength training with yoga, and then schedule a session with us today!
Flexibility and Strength Building
When people are lifting weights, they build muscle but it often comes at the expense of flexibility. If you are using a set of rubber hex dumbbells to work your biceps or chest, you are isolating those specific muscles. That’s great for building muscle, but the rest of your body is static and the extra muscle can lead to tightness and flexibility issues. However, when you practice yoga at the same time, you can counteract this problem, so you can be stronger and more flexible at the same time.
Hold More Advanced Poses
As you continue your yoga practice, you will start trying more advanced poses. Improving your flexibility is important if you want to improve, but strength has a role to play too. Although yoga does help you build strength in some capacity, some people still find that they struggle. But if you add some strength training to your routine, you can build muscle faster and that will help you when trying to work through those tough poses.
Improved Mental Health Benefits
Yoga is amazing for your mental health as it gives you an opportunity to quiet your mind and connect with your body, ultimately allowing you to be more present throughout the day. But did you know that strength training can help you improve your mental health in other ways? Lifting weights is great for beating stress and letting out anger, so when it is combined with yoga, it helps to improve your overall wellbeing.
Controlled Breathing During Weight Training
When people lift weights and their body is tense, they often hold their breath and wait for the release before breathing again. This happens unconsciously and it is very bad form. It is important that you try to control your breathing while weight training, but this can be tough. Breathing is such an important part of yoga and you learn to control your breathing while holding poses. This skill can then be transferred to your weight training so you can improve your breathing and get better results.
Many people don’t realize how well yoga and weight training complement one another. But if you combine the two, you can get a great full body workout and your performance in both activities will be improved.