Yoga for men: Yoga has such a vast range of mental and physical health benefits, it is kind of a shame how heavily yoga is marketed towards women, leaving men slightly wayside. True, yoga classes are a great place to ogle fit women in spandex, but yoga can also take your fitness to the next level. Even hardcore weight lifters can benefit from yoga. Browse this list of yoga poses for men, categorized by strengthening yoga poses, yoga poses for flexibility, balancing yoga poses, and restorative yoga poses. You can try a few, go in order, or string together your favorite to make up your own yoga workout.
The best part of all is yoga is really convenient. You can do these yoga poses for men in the morning before breakfast, during your lunch break, before a shower… pretty much any time has the potential to be yoga time. If you’re really liking these yoga for men poses you may also want to check out this yoga playlist, read up on yoga terminology, or learn more about meditation.
Yoga for Men
Yoga for Men- Strengthening Poses
Strength comes in many different forms. You may be able to back squat your bodyweight, but can you hold chair pose for 3 minutes? Explosive power is important, but so is the slow and steady kind. You probably already know the hugely important strengthening benefits of holding the negative movement of an exercise (for example, lowering yourself slowly from a pull up, rather than just dropping). These strengthening yoga poses for men are a great negative movement workout that will help you build muscle, relieve stress, and find mental clarity.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart, extend your arms overhead, and sink down until your thighs make a 45 degree angle with the floor. Keep your back straight, but allow your torso to lean forward from the hips. For an added challenge, try to rise onto your toes.
Starting in Downward Dog, lower your hips and raise your head until your body is making a straight line from your heels to the top of your head. Engage your core muscles and arms, and breathe deeply as you hold plank pose.
Starting in Plank Pose , slowly lower yourself down, keeping your elbows and arms glued to your sides. Lower yourself until your elbows make a 90 degree angle, then hold, remembering to breathe deeply. Be conscious of your back, and don’t let it curve down or up.
Begin with your knees and forearms on the ground. Then extend your legs behind you, bringing your knees off the ground and resting on your toes and forearms. Engage your core so that your body makes a straight line- do not let your back curve down, or your butt stick up- and keep your head in a neutral position.
Starting from either Plank Pose or Downward Dog (whatever you are more comfortable with) shift your weight to one arm, and rotate your body to the side. Engage your core and lift your hips upwards, and extend your free arm overhead.
Sit with your legs extended in front of your and your palms on the floor next to your hips, fingertips facing behind you. Keep your arms straight as you press upwards with your hips, lifting your butt off the floor, and allow your head to relax backwards.
Sit in the floor with your legs fully extended in front of you. Place your hands on the ground on either side of your hips, and lean back slightly, keeping your back straight. Bend your knees so that your thighs make a diagonal with the floor, and lift your feet up. Find your balance on your sit-bones, and when you are ready, fully straighten your legs.
Similar to the bodyweight exercise “Superman”, lay on your stomach with your arms by your sides. Engage your core muscles and lift your legs, chest, and head off the floor. Your arms should not be on the ground, but off the floor and against your sides.
Place your heels against the base of a wall and your hands flat on the ground. Slowly walk your feet up the wall until you are making an “L” with your body, and the majority of your weight is held by your arms, not the wall.
Sit on the ground cross-legged, with your palms flat on the floor on either side of your hips. Your back should be slightly curved forward so that your arms are slightly bent as your rest your palms on the ground. Engage your core and push down on your hands, lifting your lower body off the ground for as long as you can.
Yoga for Men- Flexibility Poses
Flexibility is often overlooked when it comes to men’s training plans, but flexibility is just another word for mobility and range of motion, a hugely important asset in fitness. Flexibility is needed for exercises such as wide-grip overhead squats, or toes-to-bar. Taking some time during your usual workouts to stretch and increase your flexibility will decrease muscle soreness, pain, and prevent injury. Plus, these flexibility yoga poses for men just plain feel really nice.
Stand with your feet together, and bend over, “rolling” your spine down as you reach towards the floor. Let your neck relax and your head hang.
Stand with your feet placed 3-4 feet apart, and hinge your torso forward at the hips. “Roll” your spine down and rest your hands on the floor, letting your neck & head relax.
Stand with your feet together, hinge forward at the hips, and bend your knees so that your palms are flat on the floor (if they aren’t already). Shift your weight so that your arms are supporting you as you hop or walk your legs back. Use your hands to push your body back towards your heels until you feel a stretch throughout your back and legs.
From Downward Dog, step one leg forward between your hands, leaving the other leg behind you, and lift your torso to an upright position. Then, sink your back leg down until your knee rests on the floor.
Starting from Four Limbed Staff Pose (the low push up position), push upwards with your arms, keeping your shoulders down & back, and your chest open. Your only points of contact with the ground should be the top of your feet, and the palms of your hands. Your knees & hips should be lifted off the ground (the main difference from Cobra Pose).
Lay on your back with your knees bent, feet hip-width apart. Space your feet and hands so that you can lightly brush your heels with your fingertips. Push your pelvis up, allowing your shoulders to rotate underneath you so you are resting on your shoulder blades, not your neck.
Yoga for Men- Balancing Poses
Finding your balance is important, both for fitness but also for your life. Practicing balance and stillness with yoga helps your mind find healthy balance and stillness in all aspects of your daily life- from work to food to fun to romance. Balancing takes mental and physical concentration, works your core muscles, and will help you with other exercises such as pistol squats.
Step one foot forward and sink into a high lunge, making sure that your front knee does not protrude over your toes. Reach overhead, and find your balance. If you are comfortable, try and lean back, opening your chest and curving your back.
From Warrior 1, swivel your hips and torso so that you “open” your body to the side. Extend your arms to each side, and look down your arm & fingertips on the same side as your bent leg.
Starting from Warrior 1 (a high lunge position), shift all of your weight onto your front foot. Simultaneously straighten your front leg and lift your back leg off the ground, letting your torso lean forward to regulate your balance.
Shift your weight onto one foot, and slide the “open” foot up the length of your standing leg. Rest your foot against the inner thigh of your standing leg (do not rest your foot on the side of your knee), and find your balance.
Yoga for Men- Restorative Poses
Got back pain? A crick in your neck? Trouble falling asleep? These yoga poses are wonderfully relaxing, and truly restorative- both physically and mentally.
Stand and hinge your torso forward at the hips. Bend your knees slightly and allow your torso to rest on your thighs. Fold your arms so that your hands are in the crook of your elbows, and squeeze your hands into fists to release tension in your spine.
Lay on your stomach and place your elbows below your shoulders. Prop yourself up on your forearms, taking care to keep your shoulders down and away from your ears.
Sit with your side to the wall, and legs extended. Lean back to the floor, swing your legs up the wall, and relax.
Lay with your back on the ground, and your knees bent. Let your knees fall to one side, and look in the opposite direction, with your arms extended to both sides.
Start in an upright (sitting) Bound Angle Pose (the “butterfly” stretch), then roll your spine back until your are laying down.
Sit with your knees slightly apart and folded underneath your body, then lean forward to rest your forehead on the ground.
Lay on your back with your legs fully extended, and your arms wherever you feel comfortable.