Boxing and intense training types tend to shorten and bulk the muscle fibres, long term this can lead to stiffness, restricted movement and discomfort as our muscles should be lengthened and open which is gained through yoga practice and stretching.
Twisting poses not only wring out the organs of impurities and toxins but can improve the twist motion and accuracy of the kicks and hooks.
Flexibility training will also enable the height and comfort of kicks and increase recovery time and reduce soreness.
Unique balancing poses encourage inner core strengthening and use of the pelvic floor muscles as well as abdominals and oblique’s enabling the boxer to become more nimble on their feet and have outstanding balance.
Body weight poses which use more muscle groups that may have not been worked for a long period of time.
Yoga is very much movement linked in with breath and being able to find the space to breath in very restricted positioning, the practitioner is encouraged throughout asana practice to stay with the breath and study the breath from movement to movement. This is a fundamental aspect of boxing as well, reminding the athlete to breath with every punch and movement- supporting faster oxygenation to brain and muscles.
Improves posture, which may have been altered due to long-term training and habit of standing in a particular stance.
Weight management; increased heart rate which burns calories and also the breathing techniques in yoga practice trigger a relaxation response which reduces stress hormones in the body which can make us put on and hold onto fat.
Reduced stress; most fighting sports can be very aggressive triggering the fight or flight mode within the brain and body. Yoga reduces stress levels hugely and helps bring the athlete “back down to earth” and also provides a nice change from the usual monotonous training regimes.
Yoga teaches us to be in the present moment, improves intuition and heightens awareness, complimenting the mental needs of a boxer in the ring perfectly, sharpening up the mind.