Why Every Athlete Should Practice Yoga
By Brittany L.
There is a stereotype that has been associated with practicing yoga that many people no longer seem to believe. The players of many professional sports teams are adding yoga to their workout regimen. Yoga serves not only as a physical aid for flexibility, mobility, and strength, but it also improves mental cognition, concentration, focus and attitude. Thanks to its multi-faceted benefits, yoga has become a compelling and integral addition to athletic training.
In the typical physical workout, it is easy to miss strengthening the small stabilizing muscles that surround your joints and spine. Yoga requires your body to hold poses that question its flexibility limits, accessing those tiny muscles that play an important role in injury prevention. Athletes spend a great deal of their life contracting these muscles, and yoga helps elongate and stretch them.
Blake Griffin, an NBA basketball player for the Detroit Pistons, who practices yoga three days a week states, “Once things start to get tight, that’s when things lock down, and my back starts to hurt, my knee starts to hurt. So, keeping everything loose helps me function at my highest level.” (www.si.com)
More and more professional athletes are now practicing yoga to not only lengthen their careers by taking better care of their bodies, but also, because yoga improves the quality of a person’s overall attitude.
Lebron James, player for the Los Angeles Lakers, discloses, “Yoga isn’t just about the body. It’s also about the mind.“ (www.thesportster.com)
This practice—originally a Hindu one–disciplines the mind to maintain a specific focus. Maintaining an awareness of one’s own breath and breathing pattern, yoga asks your body to relax into its perceived limits and trains your body to be able to withstand a greater amount of stress.
Yoga has the power to improves an athlete’s overall durability and mental capacity and can do the same for you!
During a four-year tour of duty with the United States Army where she worked as a combat engineer constructing bridges, Brittany received the “Soldier of the Year” award for her unit, two consecutive years in a row–an award given to soldiers for outstanding excellence among their peers. Afterwards, she decided to pursue her passion in the health and wellness field.
Brittany is no stranger to competitive sports, as she was a collegiate athlete when she attended Eastern Connecticut State University. Being an athlete all her life, Brittany has experienced injury and has learned the vital role that proper training plays in the success of an individual’s physical performance and mental aptitude. As a recreational supervisor’s aid, Brittany designed and instructed numerous personal training circuits that were able to be form-fitted for each individual’s needs and desires. She has trained not only athletes, but also, those individuals who seek personal training as a means to improve their health and wellness.
Intrigued by the substantial benefits of physical exercise and proper nutrition on a person’s mental stability, emotional intelligence and overall happiness, Brittany endeavored to become a certified yoga and meditation instructor. As a practitioner of high intensity workouts, she also uses her knowledge and experience as a yoga instructor to build and strengthen muscle while also toning and revitalizing.
Brittany, is in the process of obtaining additional certifications and a more in-depth knowledge of the health & wellness field to maximize her ability to help every individual achieve their own optimal health through a holistic approach. As a means to touch the lives of as many people as possible, she also speaks Spanish.