This was previously published in elephant journal.
I walked into a yoga class the other day and I was the only guy there.
There must have been 40 to 50 women in the class. To be honest, it didn’t bother me one bit. I was completely happy with being the only man, but I don’t understand why more men don’t do yoga.
I used to be a little bit embarrassed to tell my friends I do yoga because I thought I would never hear the end of it. But now, I just try to convince them by saying, “Guys, if you’re single, go to a yoga class, not to mention you’ll get in great shape.”
Not one of them has ever said anything to contradict this statement.
Here’s 10 reasons why more guys should do yoga.
1. You’ll work different muscle groups
Most guys go to the weight room and do the same exercises for years and years. Yoga offers a way to build strength in different parts of your muscles that you’ve probably never built before.
2. You will burn calories
If you take a Vinyasa class or something similar, you will burn a lot of calories that will help you lose weight. It’s also not as hard on your joints as running is.
3. Yoga reduces toxins in the muscles
A lot of guys don’t do to much stretching, so toxins tend to build up in their muscles. Yoga is all about stretching all the various muscle groups to release built up of toxins in the body.
4. Yoga is great for stress relief
A major component of yoga is working on meditation and breathing. It’s like a meditation in motion that will help you clear your mind from your stress-filled work day.
5. It’s great for pain relief
If you have sore or stiff muscles, yoga does great things to relax and relieve the tension areas of the body.
6. It will give you an edge in other sports
Professional athletes do yoga to gain any extra advantage they can get.
7. You’ll feel better
Yoga will help you sweat and release serotonin in the brain, which will improve your mood. It will also improve you confidence because you’ll be in better shape. Most importantly, a lot of yoga includes meditation, which will help you become more calm.
8. Yoga will help you sleep
Yoga will will help you sleep because it reduces stress, which is usually a major part of keeping us awake at night.
9. Yoga will help you increase your strength
Most of the postures require that you coordinate your entire body in order to get into the pose. This will help you strengthen muscles throughout your entire body.
10. Yoga will help improve your balance
A lot of postures in yoga work on improving your balance. This will help you in sports and all areas of life.
Editor: Brianna Bemel
Robert Piper is a meditation instructor, happiness enthusiast and creator of monkinthecity.com. He studied with a Taoist monk for nine and half years, and traveled extensively to Asia and Australia in search of other meditation teachers. He has spent over a decade researching, studying, and collecting information on various meditation systems of Asia. Robert is currently in the process of writing a book on meditation to make the topic more accessible for stress relief, health and happiness. You can find him on Facebook and Twitter.
—Photo credit: mikebaird/Flickr