/ yoga for climbers

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will9118 - on 18 Aug 2013
Having seen a few clips on youtube posting ideas of yoga training specific for climbers I wondered what everyone's thoughts were about it i.e. is it worth incorporating into my training routine and any good sources of dvds etc with some good yoga routines?
gd303uk - on 18 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118: it took me years to accept yoga could be good for me , but as I get older I am warming to the idea that a bit of yoga will keep my supple and allow me to get into positions I once found easy.
It's not easy though, my wife is into some extreme yoga that kills me,

If its good enough for Steve Haston ,,,,
http://steviehaston.blogspot.co.uk/2013/04/why-yoga-works-for-climbing-by-stevie.html

I like the Rodney yee yoga DVDs, get the beginners ones and work up to the harder stuff,
Easily found on amazon ,
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Rodney-Yees-Ultimate-Power-Yoga/dp/B004BTFHF4

Lol hippies, but the yoga is good.
http://www.vimeo.com/6641605


pyrrho101 - on 18 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118: Is is worth it? Well, let's be realistic. Unless flexibility is your weakest area in climbing (which I highly doubt), then it's not going to affect your climbing that much (if at all). If your goal is to climb harder then there are other activities which would be a lot more effective (e.g. bouldering).

On the other hand, it's not going to do you harm (apart from taking up potentially valuable climbing-specific training that you could be doing).
will9118 - on 18 Aug 2013
In reply to gd303uk: Thanks for the advice. I will give it a whirl...... I've had a few male climber friends who've scoffed at the idea of doing a bit of yoga but surely it'll help your balance, co-ordination and core strength. That coupled up with all the usual bouldering training, gym sessions etc must be a good thing? :-)
In reply to will9118:

It does help make you a lot more injury proof! I found that when I did do Yoga I could climb more consistently, and other things that cause trouble for me like knee pain on walk ins stopped being a barrier, meaning I could climb more often and hit a new plateu due to something else I'm doing wrong at the time. I did classes at the yoga place in Nottingham and found that style of Yoga really ideal, moved to Edinburgh and couldn't find something I liked so Pursued DVDs, lost motivation and just went climbing. Cue return of Knee pain etc!
Think they key thing is to have a go and if you don't like it try a different style of yoga before you ditch it.
Oliver.
will9118 - on 18 Aug 2013
In reply to 65m moderate millington: Cheers, i'll definately look around for a decent class to join. If it helps avoid injuries im all for it, and if it improves my climbing abilities even better..... i can do with any help i can get on that front! :-D
Mike Goldthorp - on 18 Aug 2013
In reply to pyrrho101:
> Unless flexibility is your weakest area in climbing (which I highly doubt), then it's not going to affect your climbing that much (if at all).

I think for the vast majority of climbers flexibility is a limiting factor - its not like finger strength or other facets of climbing, its much more subtle - if you can get your hips an inch closer to the wall then you essentially go from climbing a 10 degree overhang to a 5 degree overhang, or if you can get your foot high without having to lean out then your putting less outwards force on a hold.

> If your goal is to climb harder then there are other activities which would be a lot more effective (e.g. bouldering).

Yeah bouldering will definitely get you stronger, but you cant boulder every day - but you can do flexibility as much as you want. Even just doing a few stretches while your watching TV is good, but yoga is perfect cos you also work the muscles around your joints - its really important to have strength around those nice flexible joints or you can get injured from being too loose.
mark s - on 18 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118:
> (In reply to gd303uk) Thanks for the advice. I will give it a whirl...... I've had a few male climber friends who've scoffed at the idea of doing a bit of yoga but surely it'll help your balance,

ive never met anyone who suffers a balance problem unless drunk

Pwdr on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118:

Climbing.com did an article on this, "Six Yoga Poses for Climbers": http://www.climbing.com/skill/question-of-balance/

You could always try twisting yourself in knots at home before joining a class, see how you get on with it.
myserable old git - on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118: Do it, one night at a class is a small price to pay for the increased flexibility and ability to relax whilst standing(?) in ridiculous positions on the rock. You will be encouraged to twist your body into positions that you would never do in training and the shame in not being able to put your body into stupid poses when all around you can is quite an incentive in a non competitive pastime. I have been practicing yoga for 30 years plus and still with minimal training can comfortably climb the same low E grades I could do when I was young unlike most of the blokes I started with who now complain their bodies can't cope with the strain.
Tony Naylor on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to mark s:
> ive never met anyone who suffers a balance problem unless drunk

Balance when walking, balance when climbing - two different things.
Alex@home - on 19 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118:

yoga is great. it may or may not help your climbing specifically, but there is so much more to gain than just that. the main one being the relaxation that is available if you accept it.
a few things i've learnt from a number of years of doing yoga
- join a class. it's extremely difficult to stay motivated on your own - not to mention the lack of advice on how to actually do the poses that you'll get from a good teacher
- check that it's a beginner's class or that there will be enough tuition for you
- make sure the instructor is qualified
- there are many different styles of yoga so if you don't like one try another
- one of the most important things is not to try too hard. if you're at all competitive you'll probably try to force yourself further into positions. this is counter productive on 2 levels - firstly makes you more likely to injure yourself, secondly trying harder makes you less relaxed and means you get less out of the poses. it's very hard to do but learning to relax into poses by using your breath results in far better positions and a better mind set
- don't expect overnight miracles. give it a while before you decide to change style or give up
- you may (or may not?) be cynical about some of the "hippyish" aspects of yoga. try not to be - the more you accept what goes on the more you'll get out of it
Flat4matt - on 21 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118:

Personally I think yoga sets you up for longevity in life. Keeping the muscles long and mobilising the joints will keep you feeling younger and fitter in later life so you can continue to enjoy the things you enjoy in younger years. Just my two pennys worth but certainly find a place for it once a week (even thats nowhere near enough for where I want to be)
Remaining supple will result in far less injuries too!!
Matt
Martine1 - on 22 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118: I came to bouldering after about 15 years of yoga, including teaching, and it helped immensely. Yoga is not just about flexibility, but also balance, breathing, the nervous system, strength, mental training and positional awareness. Climbers posture is something that yoga helps mitigate against (shoulders rolled forwards, pecs tight). Pilates is also good for climbing as it also teaches muscle control, which is crucial for good climbing technique. If you want a more balanced body that can climb well into your twilight years and have the inclination to question aches and pains then it is worth doing yoga. If you want to become super amazing at climbing for a shorter time and prefer ignoring pains and don't mind awkward posture then just climb ;). I combine yoga with Pilates and physio exercises to keep my body happy and able to climb, it helps prevent and treat injuries. A good teacher is very important, so if you don't like one class, try another. If they can't modify poses to fit individuals then they could probably do with more training.
profitofdoom on 23 Aug 2013
In reply to gd303uk:

That is very helpful to me. Thank you
mattrm - on 23 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118:

There was a thread about it a couple of weeks ago:

http://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?t=558114

And I said this:

"Personally I quite like yoga. I think it's good for general conditioning and flexibility. Once you've learnt enough, it's easy to do 20 minutes every day and that's got to help. As long as it's something you do as well as climbing, then I'd say go for it."
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Simos on 24 Aug 2013
In reply to will9118:

When I first started climbing I was already into yoga and I think it's the main reason I was relatively injury free. It also helped with flexibility but also balance - I remember finding routes that needed balance and not strength easier. Body awareness always helps anyway.

I took a 2-year break from any exercise (incl yoga and climbing) and restarted recently - I seem to have more frequent injuries but no idea if yoga is the reason

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