You can get into your best shape by combining yoga with other fitness workouts and routines. Yoga hybrid workouts have become all the range as of late, as an active lifestyle is becoming more and more popular. As it’s becoming more apparent the benefits a regular yoga practice can give you, there’s more ways to incorporate it into your regular workout.
Here are some ways you can combine yoga poses with other fitness methods, to get into the best shape you can and move in more ways! If you’re adding a few moves to your regular workout, or adding some weights or dance moves into your yoga practice, there’s a yoga hybrid out there for you. Mixing it up can increase your endurance, strength, and most of all make your practice fun.
Here are five unique fusion yoga forms, that are worth giving a try!
Anti Gravity Yoga
If you’ve ever fancied yourself a bit of an acrobat, aerial yoga is the hybrid for you. As well as the obvious fun you’ll have from hanging from great heights, aerial yoga can also help you if you’re suffering from pain - both physical and emotional. Aerial Yoga takes the poses you’d usually do on the mat and takes them up to a silk hammock suspended from the ceiling. This allows for more modifications that make the practice easier for those with chronic pain and injury.
With more freedom of movement, you can benefit from an increase in flexibility, and give yourself a deeper stretch than a traditional yoga class. You’ll also notice a better sense of focus - as you try to concentrate on not falling out of your hammock, you’ll be more alert and aware, leading you to think and focus harder. Aerial yoga is also a great core workout, as gravity will be working on your body causing your core muscles to work harder, balancing and stabilizing your body.
Aerial yoga started from combining yoga with acrobatics, and nowadays there’s plenty of aerial yoga centered studios that you can sign up for.
HIIT yoga combines high intensity interval training (HIIT) with a yoga asana practice. HIIT workouts have gained momentum in the fitness scene, as they are a popular way to burn fat. Hiit uses bursts of intense anaerobic exercises with brief recovery periods, keeping the heart rate up and burning fat quicker than traditional exercise.
Combining HIIT with yoga allows to body to build strength at the same time as this fat burning. As hiit usually targets the muscles with movements such as lifts, squats, burpees and star jumps, adding yoga asanas that target the stabilizing muscles in the body builds up their strength and allows for active rest. Adding yoga into your HIIT workout will lessen the strain on the joints a full hiit workout can inflict on the body, as well as letting you get a quick workout in - HIIT workouts tend to last between 15-30 minutes, as you are working your body extra hard.
Boxing and Yoga
If you’re looking for a cardio workout to balance out your yoga practice, a boxing yoga hybrid may be the workout for you. Boxing is a great workout to improve your cardio and increase your heart rate beyond your yoga flow. Boxing may seem the opposite to a peaceful and tranquil yoga flow, but it’s actually a workout that forces your mind to be present, much like yoga. The strength you get from punching a bag or mats can be transferred to improving your chaturanga. Boxing is also a great de-stress and combined with the meditative properties of yoga, this combination is sure to leave your head feeling clear.
Introducing yoga to your boxing workout will help you reduce the injury and stress on the body after going a round on the punching bag. Incorporate poses which rebalance your body and release the tightness in your thighs, chest and hips from keeping in your boxing stance for long periods of time. Combining these two practices will balance out your body and mind, ending your workout on a calm mind rather than a fast paced one.
Spin and Yoga
Spinning is a popular workout to improve your heart rate and get some muscles on your leg. You know the drill, you sit on top a special spinning bike and battle your way through sprints, hills, intervals and circuits. Usually set to music, you can be spinning continuously for up to an hour - great to tone and strengthen your legs - but it can also cause tightness in those glutes, thighs and calves!
Combing that tough spinning workout with yoga can not only give you the benefits of the past paced cycling class, but also cool you down with a calming yoga session. Yoga after spinning will help you muscles to loosen and improve your balance on the bike for your next class. Yoga spinning hybrid classes will target the muscles made tight by cycling and stretch them, as well as strengthening the connecting muscles.
Paddleboarding yoga (SUP Yoga)
Finally, if you’re looking for something really out there to combine your yoga practice with, have you tried Paddleboard yoga? It’s exactly what is says on the tin - yoga done on the water on a paddle board. While it may seem out there, paddleboard yoga really engages your core and increases the difficulty of your workout, a great challenge for your mind and body. You have to stay engaged to keep your balance - or you’re going in! It also helps you refine your balance, as it's easier to tell if your weight is unequally distributed on the water. Speaking of, the water will also increase your peace of mind and help you focus on your breath - helping you to relax!
By Amy Cavill
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Spin & Yoga with Dawnelle Arthur
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