Whatever we do, we do it together.
Boys of Yoga is an international yoga community on a mission to break down barriers, smash stereotypes and unite men from all over the world through their shared passion of living mindfully.
What started as a casual conversation about how guys are rarely seen in the yoga world, has now turned into a movement to challenge the way people view yoga entirely. It's not just a practice, it's a lifestyle, and we believe that BOYS are helping to influence the culture of conditioning.
For the Boys of Yoga, their practice helps to calm the chaos in their everyday lives, reminds them to breathe and helps aid recovery. But most importantly, together, they've created a community of like-minded individuals which stretches across the globe. Today, we've asked them to share a glimpse of what being part of this community looks like.
Boys of Yoga, take it away...
Hi everyone! Here's a short 5-10 minute yoga sequence to stretch and release the body to help create strength, flexibility and mobility. Yoga is a practice for everyone and all the poses below are constructed in a way to support all body types no matter your level of practice or range of motion. Remember that yoga is an integrative practice that works to support all aspects of your life and other modalities of movement, so use this sequence as a way to help support your overall health and wellbeing, both physically and mentally.
A 5-10 Min Yoga Sequence To Help Stretch And Release The Body.
The practice of yoga is about creating connection; to ourselves, to our bodies, to our minds, to our lives. Through the physical practice the body will get stronger, but the true power of yoga is what it does on the inside. - BOYS.
Tune into the video below and watch as BOYS founder, Michael James Wong takes you through a 5-10 minute yoga sequence - exploring how to make the most of each movement so that you can experience a truly deep stretch.
1. Seated Stillness
Start here to find stillness - a seated cross-legged pose, or in any similar position to find ease. Allow the spine to sit tall above the pelvis and feel a sense of grounding through the seat, and space through the body.
2. Cat and Cow Pose
This integrative pose is essential for basic movement and lengthening of the spine. Encourage gentle movement to awaken the body and feel a sense of strength, length and support.
On the inhale, lengthen the spine forward and feel a broadening in the collarbones. As you exhale, press down through the hands and round and protract through the thoracic spine creating flexion.
3. Downward Facing Dog
A foundational pose to build strength and balance in the body. This pose requires a strong connection through the hands and feet, a long spine and a supported structure.
Your hands and feet are the foundation for your hips to lift up and back, creating a triangle shape in the body. This is not a resting posture, but a place to create steadiness, strength and presence. Allow this pose to be a reminder to come back to breath.
4. Low Lunge
A great pose to create a-symmetrical strength and encourage attention for steadiness and focus, this pose helps to create a deep stretch whilst lengthening the muscles in your quads, hip flexors and your supporting back leg.
Start from downward facing dog and step your right foot forward, lowering your left knee and untucking your toes. Draw the hips forward, creating traction and length.
5. Half Splits Pose
This pose creates length and flexibility in the hamstring of your active front leg, and your hip flexors.
From low lunge, move the hips back, staking the pelvis over the back knee to create steadiness. From here, allow the hips to continue moving backwards as the spine lengthens forward. Feel the muscle activation, but be mindful in moving too fast, or too far.
6. Easy Twist
This pose creates a gentle and supported twist in the spine.
From half splits, move the weight forward using the opposite hand to press into the floor. Use your legs to engage and activate your muscles, and your grounded hand to balance the twisting motion.
Allow the body to twist towards the front leg, moving your chest to face the wall and finally reach your top hand to the sky. With all twisting poses, create spinal length and extension before twisting to create a safe rotation in the movement.
7. Cobra Pose
This simple backbend allows the front body to lift, lengthen and broaden. From the easy twist, untwist yourself and step the front leg back as you lower to the ground.
Set the hands evenly by the shoulders enabling the support to lift and elevate the top half of your body. This gentle flexion of the spine helps to create a thoracic lift, and invites an anterior stretch for the chest and collarbones.
8. Downward Facing Dog
Allow this pose to be a reminder to come back to breath.
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Illustrations by @djhattiedraws.
After completing movement 8 - the final downward dog, repeat the entire sequence on the left-hand side of your body. Once complete, find relaxation in the final three yoga poses listed below: Reclined Figure Four, Corpse Pose and Seated Stillness. This will bring us to the end of our 5-10 minute practice.
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1. Reclined Figure Four
This is a great hip stretching pose to target the outer hip and glute. From downward facing dog, step or walk through the hands onto your seat, and then roll the spine down into the floor so that you're reclined on the mat with your knees bent and your feet on the floor.
Once here, lift and cross one ankle over the opposite lower quad, allowing the lifted thigh bone to rotate outwards. Once in place, draw up the knee on the non-lifted leg towards the shoulder on the same side whilst threading your opposite arm through the space between your legs and holding either behind the hamstring or in front of the shin bone.
Stay in this pose for at least 10 breaths before switching to the second side.
2. Savasana - Corpse Pose
This pose is essential in all yoga practices, it is an opportunity to rest and let the practice be felt throughout.
This sequence of postures up until now have been focused on building strength in the body and stretching targeted areas for active individuals. Once you arrive at your final resting pose, use it as a place to simply let the work be felt.
Stay here for at least 2-3 mins before you finish practice.
3. Easy Pose - Seated Stillness
After your final resting pose, rise up to a final seat for a last moment of stillness. Allow the spine to sit tall above the pelvis and feel a sense of grounding through the seat and space through the body.
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Who helps you recover?
Yoga is a practice that you can't win. It's simply a set of movements and opportunities to help ease the body and quiet the mind. In all forms of yoga, remember that the breath is a priority and an essential part of the practice, so make sure to give yourself the attention you deserve and focus on breathing and moving together.
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