Posted on May 21 2018
Let’s face it, at its first mention, yoga might not come off as the most masculine exercise. But that’s just it at its first mention. When you delve deeper into it, you will realize that nothing could be further from the truth.
More males are discovering this and consequently, more American men are now flocking to the yoga mats where once, it seemed, only women dared to tread. However the irony is in India where yoga originated, it wasn’t until recently that women were even allowed to practice yoga.
Men now make up 25 percent of America’s 17 million enthusiasts and this figure is increasing steadily. Perhaps it may be because several successful men in various walks of life attest to yoga’s efficiency and openly advocate its practice.
Take Hip-Hop entrepreneur Russell Simmons, for example. When reading he practiced yoga (just like Sting, Quincy Jones, and Woody Harrelson), it further increased my belief that in no time perhaps NOT practicing Yoga will be seen as strange.
Okay, maybe I overstated that, however, for Simmons (someone viewed as a pioneer in such a masculine and testosterone driven lifestyle known as Hip-Hop) to openly show off his yoga skills in a recent issue of the popular Yoga Journal Magazine, made me think, "don’t be surprised if more ‘cats’ start following suit."
This may happen a lot faster as I once read in an article online that the successful coach of the Chicago Bulls and Los Angeles Lakers, Phil Jackson, often uses yogic philosophies in the training of both teams. It had to have been effective if it led to the Bulls to a 3-time Championship and the Lakers winning their first championship in 12 years back in 2000 -- both under his guidance.
Now most men who practice yoga tend to favor the more athletic, fast-moving styles such as Vinyasa or Ashtanga. Personally, I bow to the simple yet powerful Sun Salutations common to the Sivananda style of Yoga. I showed this routine and some other balancing poses to a couple of friends once and these tough workout animals were shocked at how strenuous yoga can be. They discovered that holding the asanas (or poses) such as the peacock pose, builds strength-not the brute strength of a powerlifter but the tensile strength of a martial-arts master.
Several pro-athletes such as the Tennessee Titans running back Eddie George, Broncos tight-end Shannon Sharpe, Oakland A’s pitcher ace Barry Zito, NBA superstar Kevin Garnett, and PGA standouts Ty Tyron and David Duval, have all at some point attested to this fact.
Either way it goes, yoga is being rediscovered on an almost daily basis by men as, indeed, being ‘the’ way to go as far as exercise; sometimes exclusively, oft-times in combination with more common forms of fitness regimens.
So fellas, if you are you still not convinced this isn’t just a ‘girl’s exercise, do this, go to your favorite search engine, type up one of the following: The Peacock, 4-limbed or wheel pose. Try either one for a full minute and you will be shocked -- like my hard as nails friend once said -- to discover that “Yoga ain’t no joke!”
Gentlemen, ‘real’ dudes indeed do practice Yoga.
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