Kickboxing is about raw power, skill, quick reflexes, delivering devastating blows, and overcoming your opponent.
In contrast, yoga is about tranquility, balance, mindfulness, and gradual movement through space.
At first glance, the two disciplines couldn’t be more different from one another. Or could they?
As you’ll see in a moment, yoga offers some incredible benefits for kickboxing, which we know you’ll love.
Let’s dig into them.
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8 Impressive Benefits of Yoga For Kickboxing
Yoga is an ancient practice that’s been around for millennia. Used to elevate the physical and mental self, yoga carries significant benefits for the powerful, skilled, and dynamic kickboxing competitors.
Let’s see what these are:
1. It Improves Your Flexibility
Flexibility is nothing more than a measure of how freely we can move through space. It mostly depends on joint mobility and our muscles’ ability to lengthen. If we lack either of the two, we become stiff, immobile, and prone to injuries.
For example, you might have good shoulder joint mobility, but your flexibility will suffer if some of the surrounding muscles are stiff.
The average person doesn’t need that much flexibility to get by in life. Activities like walking, jogging, playing with your kids, moving some furniture, and carrying groceries aren’t that demanding. But if you’re interested in becoming a legitimate kickboxer, you need fantastic flexibility to throw effective strikes and defend yourself.
The good news is, practicing yoga regularly is among the best ways to improve your whole body flexibility and feel light as a feather.
2. It Builds Your Strength
What do you imagine when you hear yoga? Like most, you probably envision a woman with great flexibility doing various poses. Strength is rarely something that comes to mind when talking about yoga, but the discipline is fantastic for that.
You see, most yoga poses require impeccable strength and core stability to pull off. Good examples of such include:
- Forearm hollow back
- One-legged crow
The more you push yourself to learn such poses, the more you strengthen your body and become more balanced. These are incredibly beneficial for kickboxing because it allows you to protect yourself better, remain balanced, and deliver powerful strikes.
3. It Improves Your Posture
One of the most notable yoga benefits has to do with your posture.
By practicing regularly, you strengthen all of the muscles on the backside of your body, including your upper back and neck. These muscles play an important role in spinal alignment and allow you to stay upright.
As far as kickboxing is concerned, good posture is integral for your longevity and ability to use your upper body strength as best as you can. Good alignment is also essential for optimal self-defense. By maintaining good posture and keeping your upper body over your center of gravity, you can make good use of footwork, remain light on your feet, and make quick adjustments.
4. It Melts Stress
Let’s face it:
Stress is an inevitable part of life. Whether we like it or not, stressful situations occur every day, so it’s our job to find ways to let loose.
The great news is, yoga is a fantastic way for us to melt stress and become calmer and more present. Beyond the amazing health benefits, this also makes us better kickboxers because it allows us to remain calm, read our opponents effectively, and act at the right time.
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5. It Lowers Blood Pressure
While not exactly a kickboxing benefit, regular yoga practice appears to normalize blood pressure.
This is a profound benefit because high blood pressure – often called the silent killer – can lead to cardiovascular disease and early death.
According to research, as little as a month of regular yoga practice is enough to improve blood pressure significantly. This would mean less stress on the heart and less pressure inside our arteries, allowing us to stay healthy and excel in kickboxing.
6. It Keeps Your Joints Healthy
While exhilarating and highly beneficial, kickboxing is also demanding and can sometimes lead to joint issues. Of course, by following a good training program, recovering well, and listening to your body, you minimize that risk.
Still, yoga practice is incredibly beneficial precisely because it improves joint health. Research shows that folks who regularly practice yoga report improvements in joint health and reduction in pain.
One potential reason could be that yoga teaches balance and allows us to assume stabler positions that don’t place as much stress on our joints.
7. It Improves Your Breathing
Breathing is essential for sports performance. Regardless if you want to be a weightlifter, martial artist, or distance runner – breathing is vital.
Deep breathing allows us to get enough oxygen and produce energy more effectively. Shallow breathing leaves us winded and tired. This is especially true in martial arts like kickboxing, where every second matters, and fighters plunge into an offense if they sense weakness from the opponent.
The good news is, regular yoga practice is terrific for our breathing. It expands the ribcage and improves lung capacity, allowing us to breathe deeply and keep fatigue at bay.
8. It Reduces Anxiety and Improves Mental Health
Many kickboxers never reach their full potential, not because they lack the physical attributes but because they can’t handle their emotions. This leads to rash decisions, mistakes, and losses.
Yoga is the perfect complementary discipline for fighters because it grounds us, makes us more mindful, and improves our discipline. As a result, we become less reactive and more proactive. More importantly, we learn to keep anxiety at bay, remain focused, and feel calm even in stressful situations.
Benefits Of Yoga For Kickboxing
Let’s do a quick recap of the fantastic benefits of yoga for kickboxing:
- Yoga improves your flexibility which significantly impacts your kickboxing performance and abilities.
- Yoga makes you stronger and more balanced, which allows you to attack opponents and defend yourself much more effectively.
- It is a fantastic way to melt stress, calm the mind, and learn how to stay grounded, which is beneficial for any martial artist.
- Yoga is a great practice to improve your stability and keep your joints healthy, allowing you to practice kickboxing safely for many years.
- Though not kickboxing-specific, a considerable yoga benefit is that it improves blood pressure and reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease.
- Yoga expands your ribcage and improves your lung capacity, allowing you to breathe deeply, stay healthy, and improve your endurance.
- Yoga makes you calm and mindful. It teaches you how to keep anxiety at bay and makes you a dangerous kickboxer. Instead of falling victim to your emotions, you learn to take your time and act proactively.
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