Yoga for Athletes – Most Common Mistakes

Yoga was a huge part of my life when I was playing college baseball. I found it and got hooked pretty quickly.

No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get my teammates to enjoy it with me. At the time, I thought it was because they didn’t want to be the only dudes in a class full of women, but looking back on it I think the reason was something completely different.

In a way, yoga asks an athlete to do everything they’ve been trained not to do. Slowing down, not pushing through physical limits, breathing, being present, and taking criticism are all foreign subjects to athletes.

Even though it may seem like it’s mostly about flexibility and not feeling comfortable in a room full of yoga pants, it’s actually about learned behavior and culture.

When athletes finally break through and make their way into a yoga class, or do a random yoga class on YouTube, they bring their competitor athletic mindset to the yoga mat and, inevitably, they don’t have much fun. I’ve heard every excuse — it’s boring, it’s confusing, it’s too hard, it’s too easy — and it all comes down to discomfort and not being open to a new approach towards physicality.

If I can do anything with my yoga teaching, it would be to help athletes get more enjoyment and benefit from yoga. The beauty of this is it’s actually pretty simply if you know some key things to avoid.

In this discussion, I touch on the three most common mistakes I see athletes make in yoga:

  1. Impatience
  2. Distractedness
  3. Stubbornness

I hope this short video reaches as many athletes as possible so they can shift their perspective and approach when it comes to yoga.

There’s more potential in yoga than you think, you just have to look beyond the yoga pants.

Start using yoga to live athletically:

Yoga for Athletes - The Ultimate Guide

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About the Author:

Joe is the Founder of Icewater Yoga. Fascinated by the intersection of yoga and sport, his goal is to help athletes develop a consistent yoga practice. He lives in Claremont, CA with his wife, Jill.