Do you ever have those days on the bike where your legs just have no power or are almost disconnected from your body?
Regardless of activity or sport, sometimes the body doesn’t always operate the way you’d like. We need to coax our body to perform and can do so with simple strategies to warm up.
In the exercise physiology world it’s well known that proper warm-up, light stretching and balancing exercises help improve athletic performance. Sounds a lot like yoga, doesn’t it?
Yoga can not only help get you more present in your body and maximize performance, it can also improve mental focus and breath control. Once your head is in the game, the body always follows.
For athletes, pre-exercise yoga is like plugging your body into an electric socket…it can jumpstart your body in ways you never imagined. Yoga can help you feel more connected to your body, muscles opened and more engaged.
A pose like malasana (squat) can root the femur bones into your hip sockets. A balancing pose like vrksasana (tree pose) will help with increasing your awareness and activate everything from your toes up to your head. Navasana (boat) activates the core. Even a few minutes of breath work allows for greater control of ventilation as you increase power output.
Along with filling up water bottles, pumping up tires, putting together your nutritional support, and warming up slowly, try a quick yoga routine to see if it makes a difference on your next ride.
About Taro Smith, Ph.D
Taro is a physiologist, yoga teacher, and former bike racer. He designs specialty content for YogaGlo to benefit a broad range of yoga practitioners. He is the co-founder of Boulder Cycle Sport, a nationally renowned cycling retailer and 90 Monkeys, a professional yoga school. Connect with Taro on the bike via Strava TSmith and on LinkedIn Taro Smith – See more here.