Taking Yoga Off the Mat and onto the Rocks

As rock climbing continues to grow in popularity, a new trend is popping up in climbing gyms across the country: yoga. While climbers build great physical strength to overcome difficult routes, they still require the flexibility that yoga provides. As climbers spread themselves across the rocks, many routes require the hips and legs to be extremely flexible. Additionally, balance is critical for those times when climbers find themselves centered over just one leg. The meditative aspects of the yoga practice transition perfectly to climbing. Bringing that meditative focus into the moment and the route ahead is one of the ways that yoga assists climbers in reaching new heights. As a yoga teacher and a climber, I’ve had the privilege of assisting climbers in gaining the flexibility and focus they need to continue to reach those heights. While a well-rounded yoga practice is recommended to achieve optimal results, here are a few postures that are of benefit to climbers:

Warrior I, II, and III
Wide-legged Forward Folds
Tree Pose

Finding your balance in a climbing shoe adds a challenging element to the pose

These postures assist in relaxing and stretching the muscles in the hips and legs, providing the flexibility required in tackling more challenging routes. The including balancing postures not only assist in building balance of the body, but also provide opportunities to focus the mind.

If you’ve never tried rock climbing, I encourage you to find a local climbing gym and give it a go. The thrill of completing your first route is addictive. Climbing allows you to focus completely on the obstacle ahead, pushing all other worries away. In that moment when you achieve your goal, the thrill is worth all the hard work that came before.

Laura takes fitness to new heights, sporting the Leo Fitted Pants.

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