It’s currently estimated that more than 300 million people around the world practice yoga. But this should come as no surprise when you take into account the significant health benefits of this practice! Restorative yoga poses in particular help hugely to improve overall flexibility, mobility, and recovery, and there are some asanas perfectly suited to golfers.
Try to work these into your life as part of a daily routine, and remember to reward yourself properly when you’ve ticked everything off on your To-Do list. You could play Bingo games online, take yourself out for a nice meal, or buy that sweater you’ve been eyeing that’s slightly out of your price range!
Kapotasana, or Pigeon Pose
Kapotasana is a wonderful hip-opener and will also relieve tension in your glute muscles and groin. It will also see your golf swing become smoother and faster!
Start this pose in Downward Facing Dog. Then bring one leg up and cross it to the other side of your body, making sure your weight is balanced evenly while you gently press down on the perpendicular leg. Hold for a few seconds and then repeat on the other side.
Parivrtta Utkatasana, or Revolved Chair Pose
Parivrtta Utkatasana is another wonderfully restorative pose that will open your hips. Start in Chair Pose, keeping your knees slightly bent and lifting your hands over your head while ensuring your spine stays straight. Then bring your palms together and twist your upper body over to one side.
It’s important to start this twist in your torso, not in the neck or shoulders, and don’t drop your hips to increase how far you can rotate no matter how tempting this may be.
Salamba Bhujangasana, or Sphinx Pose
Lie down with your legs flat on the floor. Then gently start bending your back, pressing your forearms down, lifting your upper body off the floor. Try to conjure up a picture of the actual Great Sphinx of Gaza as you’re doing it, and remember to keep your legs and hips flat against the floor.
This asana will strengthen your shoulders, mid-, and lower-back, all important areas for control and power in your golf swing.
Vasisthasana, or Side Plank
This pose is great for healing any imbalance in the centre of your body and is especially good for fixing problems in your torso and hips. Golfers will enjoy how much stronger it makes their shoulders, too.
Press one palm flat onto a mat, spreading the fingers and pointing them forward. Then elevate your body off the floor, keeping it straight from your head to your toes. Don’t put all the pressure on your arm or upper body, try instead to contract your core and use your leg muscles to ensure you don’t injure your hand or wrist.
Parsva Balasana, or Bird Dog Pose
Bird Dog Pose will give you more core-strength and improve your balance overall.
Start on your hands and knees on your yoga mat, and then extend one arm straight in front of you while doing the same thing with your opposite leg behind you. Keep your body balanced using the arm and leg still on the floor, and, after holding for a few seconds, repeat on the other side.