What are the foundational poses for men? I will describe poses that are great for men to begin with. I will also add how you can make these poses both tougher and easier to match a man’s body. Yoga helps men integrate strength within the body as well as offer men a method to relax and find a deeper meaning in their lives. Yoga especially helps you build core strength since most poses involve the core. Yoga also increases your mobility and builds endurance. The longer your muscles are the more range of motion you have and thus the more powerful you are. Here are five poses to start with today!
Downward facing dog
This is the foundational pose to start with. A lot of times men are tight in the back and they might hunch in this V position. To take the hunch away, bend the knees. This will free up the spine to elongate. You can also lift the heels up. This will give you that nice V shape. Slowly, as you warm up the body, you can bring the heels back down towards the mat. To make this pose harder, place one arm on the same-side ankle or opposite-side ankle. Try lifting one leg at a time and play with cross body balancing. Find a challenging camel position by lifting the back leg, bending the leg and taking the opposite arm back to meet the ankle.
As you press the hips down from the downward dog position into a high push up with arms straight, this is plank pose. This pose might be hard to hold at first. To build strength, hold for seconds then drop the knees. Repeat for as many cycles as you can. Make sure your shoulders stay directly above the wrists and press through the finger pads into the ground. To make this tougher, widen the feet and practice lifting a hand forward come onto your fingertips in plank to up the challenge.
From plank, we go through chaturanga to get to the floor. To start you may want to modify by placing your knees down. Bend the elbows and look forward. You can either come to your belly or straighten the arms and come all the way up to upward facing dog pose. This pose is a great strengthening pose as it builds core, arm, shoulder, and leg muscles.
Here, press through the hands and lift the knees off the floor. After upward-facing pose pulls the hips back to the downward-facing dog. To modify this pose, keep the belly on the floor and stay in sphinx pose by placing bent elbows on the floor and just raising the upper chest and head. This is a great pose for men because men tend to have a hunch in their back.
From all fours sit on your heels, toes touching. Place the forehead on the mat and stretch the arms either forward or to either side of the body. Don’t underestimate this pose it elongates your spine, relieves back pain, and promotes a state of relaxation. This is a great pose to begin opening up the hips and thighs and prepare for deeper yoga stretches.
Try these poses by themselves repeat 3-5 cycles of these poses to get yoga benefits.