Four ways yoga helps triathletes
By Ea Francisco
As a triathlete, you go through a lot of intense training. With having three different sports to work on, you’d probably think that adding another kind of workout like yoga would be time-consuming and unnecessary. However, there are a lot of benefits a triathlete can get from yoga that they can’t get from other workouts.
During your daily activities, you are sometimes unaware of your body posture, which can cause stiffness and aching. Even when you’re running or biking, you can develop bad posture. Yoga targets sore muscles and focuses on correcting posture. It would also make you more aware of your body and put it back in alignment. While doing different poses, you can identify which muscles have been neglected and need attention.
Yoga isn’t just about flexibility but strength, too. Some positions require you to lift your own body weight and holding poses helps build core strength, which is essential for all three discipline in triathlon. Developing your core muscle strength improves your balance and stability. Besides, other types of yoga have positions that strengthen different parts of your body so you can tailor your yoga in a way that works for you.
One important element in yoga is breathing because it helps you discern the differences in your body when you are tense and relaxed. Different types of yoga practice different kinds of breathing techniques, and all these help improve your lung capacity and breathing patterns. This enables better access to parts of your respiratory system so that inhaling and exhaling becomes more efficient.
Training shouldn’t just be about physical strength but also mental strength. Going through intense training and long races can be mentally draining, and this is where yoga comes in. It teaches patience, control, and awareness that help athletes stay calm and focused in the face of challenges. If you experience a burnout while training or in a race, meditation and relaxation techniques in yoga can help you refocus.
There’s nothing wrong with taking a different direction in your training; in fact it might even make you a better triathlete. Having variety can help improve performance and prevent overworking. And yoga is one way of putting things into perspective.