Head Coach Armando Sá integrating the practice of Yoga into his training regimen for his teams at KNSC.
Why practice Yoga? Well, soccer players can see great benefits from practicing Yoga not only to improve flexibility and strength, but also to improve agility, co-ordination and concentration. Soccer players who practice yoga are more likely to be more focused and less likely to endure an injury. Yoga prepares your muscles for strenuous exercise, such as that of a soccer game, which involves a lot of running and sprinting where players can become tight and prone to injuries, Yoga, in turn, can prevent muscle strains and joint stress
Many top professionals advocate for yoga, saying it improves the longevity of an athlete’s playing career. As an example, Ryan Giggs who has had an astonishing 963 appearances with Manchester United of the Premier League and who sustained a lot of injuries early in his career refers to yoga as his “Fountain of Youth” and a huge reason behind his ability to play into his 40s.
"It tests parts of your body that you just don’t use in football. The first time I did it, about five years ago, I was completely knackered. I went home from the training ground and slept for three hours in the afternoon. I actually dreaded yoga for the first year because it made muscles I didn’t know I had ache, although I know some of the lads think it’s really a bit soft." – Ryan Giggs
Some other examples of athletes incorporating the practice of yoga are: LeBron James, Nani and Rui Patricio etc.
Yoga is simple and timeless and makes a great complement to your team sport. You will not only will see and feel the immediate benefit from only a single session, if you maintain a consistent yoga practice you will also realize the lasting benefits that go along with it.