By – STEFAN GRECU
Yoga is great for cyclists to help improve flexibility and also for core strength. NAMASTE will show you two yoga poses each issue geared specifically for cyclists, so you can build a yoga practice into your schedule.
TARASANA (STAR POSE)
This pose focuses on releasing the lower back while stretching the often neglected inner-thigh muscles, as cyclists tend to focus on the larger muscle groups. While seated on the ground or on a pillow, block, blanket, bolster, or other supportive prop, place your feet together. Have them far enough away to create a diamond shape with your legs as they unfold to the sides. Place your hands on your feet or ankles, and as you exhale slowly lower your head towards your feet. Go as far as you’re comfortable, release the head to stretch your neck, and breathe steadily as you feel the stretch in your inner-thighs and lower back. If the stretch is too intense, use other supportive props for your head or legs. Take 5–10 slow breaths and inhale slowly as you come up.
(SIDE-BENDING MOUNTAIN POSE)
This pose will help stretch the side body, allowing more flexibility to perform side-to-side movements on a mountain bike.Standing with feet shoulder width apart, inhale and lift your arms overhead, interlace the fingers and exhale while bending to the right. Engage your core to protect the lower back, keep the upper body straight and shoulders back. To increase effectiveness, place a bit more weight on the left foot, and/or grab your left wrist and pull while providing opposite resistance on the left side. Inhale to lift up to centre and exhale while bending to the left. Stretch both sides in the same manner. Complete at least two per side or more if necessary.