Footballer Ryan Giggs - when asked what accounts for his sporting longevity:
“Yoga. It tests parts of your body that you just don’t use in football. The first time I did it, I was completely knackered. I went home from the training ground and slept for three hours in the afternoon. I actually dreaded yoga for the first year because it made muscles I didn’t know I had ache.”
See his You Tube video below.....
Crewe manager Steve Davis introduced yoga sessions to training:
“If you can help flexibility, you prolong their careers. It will cut down injuries and strengthen areas where they're weak at the moment. It's something different and it will freshen things up." BBC Sport report, Nov 2011
West Ham & England goalkeeper David James (following a knee injury):
"I came to yoga as part of my rehabilitation process but quickly saw the benefit of an on-going practice. I now have regular sessions to keep my muscles flexible, my body aligned and my mind free from stress!” He now does yoga up to three times a week when his regime allows.
A few others in the world of sport who practice regularly:
Rugby - New Zealand All Blacks
Cricket – India National Team
Baseball – Chicago Cubs
US Football – New York Giants
US Football – Miami Dolphins
Basketball – Los Angeles Lakers
Football – Ryan Giggs
Football – David James (West Ham & England goalkeeper)
Runner - Karl Lewis
Tennis - Pete Sampras
Tennis - Andy Roddick
Tennis - Greg Rusedski
Boxer – Evander Holyfield
and many, many more...........
BENEFITS OF YOGA IN SPORT
A regular yoga class lasts from 60-90 mins. Poses are held from 30 seconds to several minutes so that muscles and deep connective tissue are simultaneously stretched and strengthened giving them a rubber band memory not achieved in traditional exercise. Stretched muscle contracts more strongly and more efficiently than un-stretched muscle, thus regular yoga practice actually enhances overall performance.
Connective tissue attaches muscle to bone and stabilizes all of the joints. Regular non-yoga exercise shortens and bulks muscle it uses, which tightens up joints making them rigid, reducing their field of motion. Thus sportsmen and women are prone to regular injury when the body is made to, or accidentally, does something outside of this field of motion. Regular yoga practice promotes an important degree of increased malleability which can dramatically reduce the incidence of injury. And if injury does occur, rehabilitation time can be cut significantly.
Dramatically enhances physical balance by developing awareness of the body's centre, giving the ability to prevent or recover from falls, while enhancing agility and manoeuverability.
Improves circulation, massages internal organs and glands for optimum health.
Circulates and detoxifies lymph fluid to speed up recovery time from training 15% faster, helping to eliminate fatigue.
Increases life force energy.
Enhances sensory acuity, mental focus, concentration, mental clarity, will power and determination.
Dissolves pre-competition anxiety and stress. Helps to balance & manage emotions that could cloud focus, concentration & judgement.
Trains the athlete to reach and stay in a focused mental zone.
Quickens mental response time for more effective game play and strategy.
When doing yoga as a team it enhances team synergy and team chemistry on the playing field.