It’s not every day that you meet men who are passionate about yoga. Maybe it’s because it’s not as strenuous or intense as other exercises or because yoga demands flexibility which many men find overwhelming. However, the benefits of yoga for men are undeniable and it’s great to see more and more men joining our yoga teacher training. There are many yoga health benefits that they can enjoy and master through training.
Yoga is a very relaxing workout that helps improve the mind, body, and spirit. Contrary to what others believe, it isn’t just about meditating and relaxing. There are physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual benefits of yoga that men should try adding to their workout regimen.
Those who practice yoga will agree that it tones muscles increases strength, improves physical health, reduces injuries from other exercises, and helps tolerates pain. It can also cultivate focus and give you a more optimistic outlook. You’ll have a healthier lifestyle with yoga, which can help with stress management, better sleep, and anxiety.
There are spiritual benefits of yoga as well. Yogis find a greater purpose and meaning in life as they feel more motivated to achieve their goals. They have more hope and compassion by practicing non-violence, too. Yoga teaches you to reflect upon yourself and know your mind and body better. Further, you find inner peace and contentment in what you do.
Read on to find out more about the unexpected benefits of yoga for men.
1) Improves sex life
Are you suffering from premature ejaculation? If yes, yoga could be the solution you need to improve your sex life. According to a study conducted among men with premature ejaculation (PE), those who did yoga for three months improved their ejaculation timing compared to those who took medications for PE.
Another 2011 study claimed that men who practiced yoga for 12 weeks also showed improved overall sexual function. They have better sex drives, sex satisfaction, performance in bed, and control over their ejaculation. They have more intense orgasms, too. It’s because yoga improves mood and pelvic muscle tone and reduces anxiety.
The cat and cow yoga pose, also known as the spinal flexion and extension, helps tone the hips and pelvis. It increases blood flow and strengthens the muscles supporting the genitals. Doing this pose regularly can lead to better performance in bed. You can do this by doing the following steps:
- Keep your hands apart with your knees under your hips.
- Curve your lower back and bring your head up as you inhale deeply.
- Tilt your pelvis like a “cow,” then exhale deeply while bringing your abdomen in.
- Like a “cat”, arch your spine and gently bring your head and pelvis down.
- Repeat this ten times.
2) Expands work productivity
Get ready to do better at work by incorporating yoga into your daily routine. A study conducted on 85,000 U.S. workers proved that yoga could help improve well-being and prevent burnout caused by stress in the workplace. The researchers claimed that such mindfulness-based intervention could increase employees’ mental resilience, especially for those more vulnerable to burnout.
Another study in 2013 discovered that a six-month intervention incorporating yoga with a general workout a week led to greater workplace vitality. It lowered fatigue levels while increasing perseverance and resilience levels.
Try the Seated Tadasana Mountain Pose at your workplace to strengthen your core muscles and relieve your body from back pain. Here’s how:
- Sit on a chair, ensuring that your spine, head, and neck are in one line while tucking your chin in a bit.
- Slowly lift your shoulders, then move it back and down your back.
- Put your knees in front of your hips and place your ankles under them.
- Point your toes forward.
3) Helps you sleep better
Why take sleeping pills when you can combat insomnia naturally by doing yoga? Many people find it hard to fall asleep at night; if you’re one of them, it’s time to turn to yoga. You’ll have fewer sleep disturbances, a shorter time falling asleep, and less likely to take sleep meds. Having better sleep quality is one of the many benefits of yoga for men.
This could be attributed to the physical and mental efforts you need to exert during yoga due to the relaxing and stretching of your muscles. Yoga breathing exercises also help because they strengthen the respiratory muscles, preventing snoring or sleep apnoea.
Try a simple pose like the legs-up-the-wall, which is gentle on the body and ideal for beginners. It’s a passive pose that stretches your neck, hamstrings, and the front of your torso. It helps prepare your brain and body for a good night’s sleep. These are the steps:
- Put your yoga mat in an area of the wall with space. Sit parallel to it.
- Lie on your lower back and slowly lift your feet. Move your torso perpendicular to the wall.
- Gently put your sitting bones up against the wall’s base, raise your legs against the wall, and extend them.
- Place your arms to your sides with palms up.
- Stay in this position for as long as you like. Breathe deeply as you release tension from your body.
Improves mobility and posture
Joints and muscles can become stiff and achy after doing the same movements daily. Doing a lifting routine can contribute, too, especially if you need to incorporate mobility moves. Muscle tightness due to exercises men do to bulk up their abs, arms, and chest leads to a round or slumped back.
Many also spend their day sitting in front of the computer or using their mobile phone, which only causes a sinking chest with shoulders rolling in and the head dropping.
One of the benefits of yoga for men is that it can counter these effects while increasing the flexibility of your shoulders, hamstring, and lower back. Moreover, as your posture improves, you’ll also look taller.
Try the Malasana or garland pose by following these steps:
- Stand with your feet apart, approximately the mat’s width apart.
- Slowly squat by bending your knees and lowering your butt towards the floor.
- Your toes may want to turn out but do just what is necessary. You’ll eventually have to keep your feet closer to parallel.
- Gently switch to the Anjali mudra or prayer position by putting your arms inside your knees and bending the elbows so your palms are together.
- As your hands are in your heart center, try to touch your sternum with your thumbs as if trying to keep your chest lifted. Do this while pressing your upper arms into your thighs and keeping the things and upper arm engaged.
- Straighten your spine while your butt moves toward the floor. Keep the shoulder away from the ears.
- Stay in this pose for five breaths.
4) Beats stress
The workplace is one of the most common causes of stress among men. Working overtime, beating the deadline, stiff competition, and working with a demanding employer are reasons men feel stressed out. Fortunately, yoga is here to help beat the stress.
Yoga helps in relaxing you mentally and physically by reducing stress and anxiety. Some poses relieve tension, promote flexibility, and provide pain relief. This exercise can help release physical blockages to release tension and emotions effectively.
Your body learns to respond to stress better by reducing blood pressure and heart rate, stress hormone levels decrease, and you’ll feel calmer.
The downward-facing dog pose has many yoga health benefits. Here’s how to do it:
- Start on all fours, hands, and knees while spreading your palms wide and stacking your shoulders over your wrists.
- Keep your knees apart with your toes curled under.
- Slowly move the palms out in front of your shoulders, ensuring they’re spread flat.
- Raise your knees and move your stomach toward your thighs.
- Slowly lift your hips while straightening the legs with your toes pointing forward.
- Bend your knees slightly, then slowly straighten your legs until they reach your heels toward the mat.
- Raise the hips high while you continue to reach your heels toward the mat.
- Bend a knee at a time while you straighten the other leg as you reach the heel towards your mat.
- Hold the position for 5 to 10 breaths, switching between your legs.
5) Improves breathing
Did you know that proper breathing can help improve overall health? This is where yoga can help men. Different yoga poses incorporate deep breathing methods that allow you to practice “pranayama.” It’s a breathing technique that aids in training and expanding your lungs to transfer more oxygen throughout your body.
The Bhujangasana or cobra pose is one of the most effective yoga positions that guarantee improved breathing. Here’s how to do it:
- Lie facing the ground while keeping your hands at shoulder level.
- Use your palm to lift your body from the torso to stretch back muscles.
- Straighten your arm and face the ceiling.
- Hold this pose for around 20 seconds.
There are numerous benefits of yoga for men. You can also reap these excellent yoga health benefits by including yoga in your workout. Start your training today to experience all these unexpected benefits of yoga.