The concept of having a better-looking body is not just limited to women. These days even men give hours in the gym building their body. However, men are normally sceptical about doing yoga as there is a preconceived idea that yoga won’t help them develop muscles. The fact is yoga is not an option for the gym, yoga asanas fit the body for workouts in the gym by making you more flexible and improving your stamina. It forms a muscular balance in the body and helps reduce stress.
Below are 5 basic postures that will give with the foundation of flexibility and strength that every man must.
1. Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Spinal Twist)
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Most asanas bend the spinal column either backward or forward. In order to get it truly flexible, it must be bent laterally as well. This asana helps increase the elasticity of the spine. The flow also tones the spinal nerves and ligaments.
- Bend down with your legs together, resting on your heels.
- Then sit to the right of your feet.
- Uplift your left leg over your right, putting the foot against the outside of the right knee. Take your right heel close to your buttocks. Keep the spine erect.
- Spread your arms out to the sides at shoulder level and bend around to your left.
- Now take the right arm down on the outside of the left knee and keep the left foot in the right hand, putting your left hand on the floor behind you. Exhaling, twist as far as possible to the left. See over the left shoulder and hold for 30 seconds.
- Repeat the course twisting to the right.
2. Dhanurasana Or Bow Pose
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This pose boosts both halves of the body at once. It tones your back muscles and keeps the elasticity of the spine, lifting posture and vitality. Balancing the mass of the body on your abdomen reduces abdominal fat that is an issue for most men.
- Rest down on your front with the head down. Inhale and bend your knees up. Then move back with your hands and grasp your ankles. Then exhale.
- Inhaling, raise your head and chest, and pull your ankles up, raising the knees and thighs off the floor. Arch backward and look up. Take 3 deep breathing in this pose, and then exhale and release it.
3. Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)
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The spine holds a powerful backward stretch in the pose. The lower back, which doesn’t get worked out in the gym is involved in this asana.
- Rest down with your legs together and your hands on your shoulders. Lean your forehead on the floor.
- Inhaling, take your head up. Now, lift up your hands and use the back muscles to lift your chest as high as possible. Hold for 5 breaths. Exhale and come down gently.
4. Paschimottanasana (The Forward Bend)
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The back of the body is stretched from the feet to the top of the spine. Practicing this asana helps lessen tightness in the hips and hamstrings which are a difficult area for men.
- From a resting position, with your arms straight out behind you, inhale and come up to a sitting posture. Flex your feet and pull the muscle of your buttocks out from beneath you, so that you are sitting right on the pelvic bone. Stretch your arms above your head stretching the spine.
- Pulling the abdomen in; exhale and fold forward from the pelvis gripping the back straight. Bring your chin toward your shins and your chest toward your legs.
- Continue right down and hold onto whichever part of your legs or feet you can easily reach. With every exhalation, keep going longer into the pose.
5. Halasana (Plough Pose)
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This pose gives flexibility to the spine and neck and strengthens the back, shoulder, and arm muscles in men. It increases healthy thyroid and prostate gland function.
- Rest down on your back, with your legs together and you’re hands down by your sides. Inhale and lift your legs up. Exhale, then inhale and bring your hips up off the ground.
- Hold your back with your hands, keeping your elbows as close to one another as possible. Then, without flexing your knees, exhale and bring your legs down behind your front. If you can’t yet reach the floor with your feet, remain to breathe deeply in this position.
- If your feet easily reach the floor, keep your toes bent under and push your torso up. Spread your arms out behind your back with the hands flat on the ground. Breathe slowly and deeply and wait in the pose for a minute.
Practice each of these asanas 4-5 times a week to improve your strength and flexibility. Practice each pose for 30 seconds to 1 minute while holding your breathing smooth throughout.