It is important to warm up before a workout and take the time you need to recover from exercise because it takes a toll on your body over time. One way to address both the need to prepare for a workout and to recover from a workout is to do certain yoga poses before and after every workout.
Yoga is helpful for both warmup and recovery. For warmup, yoga primes your muscles for exercise, ensuring your body is ready for the stress of exercise. Yoga also helps your balance and agility, putting you in a good position before your workout. For recovery, yoga allows oxygen to flow to hard to reach places to aid healing.
How To Incorporate Yoga Into Your Workout
Before your workout, start with some yoga poses to prime your muscles. Below, we will go over some good poses to do both before and after working out on the two most popular machines at our fitness club. Then, complete your workout. Once you have finished, gently ease into your first post-workout pose. Both warm up and recovery should only take about five minutes each.
While the treadmill causes less stress on your joints than running outside, people tend to overstride on treadmills, throwing them off balance. It is important to work out the tension in your hamstrings and lower back before working out on the treadmill.
Pre-workout pose: Lying Big Toe
Start by lying on your back on the floor. Lift your right leg up to a 90-degree angle. Grab the big toe of your right foot with your right hand and gently pull it closer to your body with your left leg grounded to the floor. If you can’t reach, use a yoga strap or towel instead. If your back rounds, bend your left knee and put your left foot on the ground. Repeat on the other side of your body.
Post-workout pose: Half Hero
Use this pose after your treadmill workout to avoid thigh cramps. Get on all fours, facing away from a wall and touching it with your feet. Place your left shin on the wall by bending your knee back and putting it on the base of the wall. Gently lift your torso. You should feel the stretch in your quad. Be gentle, as this pose can cause a very intense stretch. Repeat with your right side.
Elliptical workouts can be a great way to get an intense cardio workout without hurting your knees. However, ellipticals can also cause a lot of tension in the body, particularly the lower back and shoulders, so it is important to stretch before and after.
Pre-workout pose: Reclined Twist
Stretch your glutes and spine with this pose. Lie on your back and cross the right thigh over the left, allowing your knees to roll to the right. Hold this for a few breaths before switching to the other side of the body.
Post-workout pose: Cross-Legged Stretch
Sit cross-legged on the floor. Then, put your hands in front of you and lift your hips. Walk your hands out as far as possible without rounding the back. Breathe deeply to push yourself further out. This will release the tension in your lower back.
Now you are ready to get the most out of your workout at our fitness club! Come into Spunk Fitness to work out today.