man with open arms at sunset
Lifestyle

Men’s Yoga Routine for Beginners

Yoga as a full-body workout is extremely beneficial for everyone, men included. It can help you improve your endurance and flexibility, reduce the probability of injury, and improve your stability among many other benefits. However, we know that it can be a little intimidating if you have never tried yoga.

The good news is that the most basic men’s yoga poses help you develop the foundation of strength and flexibility. Below is a comprehensive men’s yoga routine for beginners that will help ease you into the world of yoga. This workout routine focuses on a slow pace, introductory poses, and mind-breath connection.

Breathing (Loosening up)

Breathing is a fundamental part of yoga and is incorporated in virtually every static and dynamic yoga pose.

Remember that the ideal breath is a deep full breath through your nose. Start the routine by sitting down on a mat and bending your legs across each other.

Keep your back straight, head forward, and your palms together in front of your chest. Take a deep breath, hold it for about two seconds, and then slowly exhale. Repeat the process 8 times (8 breaths).

Mountain Pose

The mountain is among the most basic standing poses. It is a great way to get into your men’s yoga flow and helps accustom your body to the right posture required in yoga. The mountain targets the full body to improve posture, engage your core properly and release tension in the shoulders.

How to Perform

  • Stand with your own feet together with your heels parted slightly and your toes touching.
  • Ensure that you evenly distribute your body’s weight on all 4 corners of your feet: the heels, the balls, the inside edges, and outside edges.
  • Flex your quadriceps and thigh muscles.
  • Rotate well the thigh muscles, tucking your tailbone inwards and working your sit bones downward.
  • Engage your own core and roll your shoulders both back and down to open well your chest.
  • Point your own fingers toward the ground with your palms facing outwards by engaging your arms muscles.
  • Gently try to lift your chin towards the ceiling and lengthen your neck.
  • Relax your face the breath-holding the position for around 10 breaths (approximately 30-60 seconds).

Balancing Table Pose

The balancing table pose is a simple pose that overall body balance, coordination, and focus. It stretches and lengthens your hamstrings, glutes, quads, calves, and triceps.

It will also help you develop core strength and great posture. In yoga, core strength is crucial as it allows you to hold positions without compromising your spine’s natural alignment.

How to Perform

  • Start by getting down on your hands as well as knees with your back straight (the tabletop position).
  • Your palms should be directly under your shoulders and your knees below your knees.
  • Rest the tops your toes on the floor by untucking your toes.
  • Always maintain a neutral spine and lengthen your torso.
  • Reach your left hand forward, with your right biceps next to your left ear; fingers pointed out.
  • Engage your muscles of the core to avoid arching your back too much.
  • Extend your right leg back to the point where it is parallel to the ground
  • Reach forward with your left fingertips while pressing back with your right foot as though you are being pulled from both sides.
  • Hold this position for 3 to 5 breaths.
  • Release your left hand and right leg back to the tabletop position.
  • Switch sides and repeat the pose for several rounds.

Tip: If the floor is placing too much pressure on your knees, place small folded towels beneath your knees.

Downward Dog Pose

The downward dog is one of the most widely recognized yoga poses. This yoga pose stretches your hamstrings, calves, shoulders, and arches of your feet. It also helps strengthen your upper and lower body.

How to Perform

  • Start on the mat with your hands forward from your shoulders slightly and your knees under your hips.
  • Spread your fingertips and turn your toes under.
  • Press into your palms, breathe out , then straighten your own arms and lift your knees off the ground.
  • Remember to work your heels slightly close to the floor. In case your own hamstrings feel too tight, you may keep your knees bent slightly.
  • Drop your head between the arms, then push your own shoulder blades down wards and lengthen your tailbone outward from your pelvis lifting up your buttocks.
  • Feel your hamstrings stretch as you gradually try to touch your heels to the floor (it may not happen on your first try, but will over time).
  • Hold this position for about 10 breaths.

Tip: You may find this pose a bit challenging as men generally have tighter muscles. In the beginning, you may keep your heels lifted as you work towards improving your flexibility.

Crescent Moon (Standing Side Stretch)

The standing side stretch targets your upper back, shoulders, and core. It helps increase the range of motion
in these areas to increase your power during twisting movements.

How to Perform:

  • Start by standing in the mountain pose with your knees bent slightly, toes touching and core engaged to prevent lower back arching.
  • Your chest should be raised, and your shoulders relaxed.
  • Extend your arms a point higher of your head with interlaced fingers.
  • Reach your extended arms up and over to the right side while pressing your hips in the opposite direction.
  • Throughout the movement, keep your arms straight, chin lifted away from the chest and your biceps by your ears.
  • Try and go as far sideways as comfortable possible holding the position for about 30 seconds.
  • Come back to the center line and switch sides

Reverse Crescent Moon (Standing Backbend)

The standing backbend works your chest, upper back, shoulders, and core muscles. It increases your back
and shoulder’s range of motion and stretches your spine.

How to Perform

  • Start by standing in the mountain pose.
  • Reach out your arms overhead, shoulder-width part with your palms facing forward.
  • Lift your chest up and back in a backbend and lengthen your spine as your bend.
  • Squeeze your arms as far backward as you can
  • Always avoid arching your lower back and bending your knees
  • Hold the position for about 10 breaths (30-60 seconds).

Awkward Pose (Squat Hold)

The squat hold is a slightly challenging pose that targets your quads, glutes, hamstrings, hip flexors, external
hip rotators, and core. It will help you develop lower body endurance, core stability, and improve the depth
involved in your squats.

How to Perform

  • Start with your feet shoulder-width apart, and your heels lined up with your middle toes.
  • Keeping your spine neutral, sit back and down into a squat position.
  • Your core should remain engaged and back flat.
  • Extend your arms outwards parallel to the ground with your shoulders relaxed.
  • You should feel most of your weight on your heels
  • Hold this squat position for 30 seconds to 3 minutes.

Tip: Keep a straight line with your torso so that your chest does not puff out. Draw your ribs in towards one another in order to have your core engaged.

Cobra Pose

Many men tend to have tight back and shoulder muscles. The cobra pose will help you stretch your shoulders and arms while straightening your lower and upper back muscles.

It is a beginner-friendly backbend that will prepare the body for even deeper backbends.

How to Perform

  • Start by lying down on the mat in a prone position on your chest with your hand’s palm down under your shoulders.
  • Reach your feet as far back as you can while pressing the top of your toes into the floor. Your toes should be on the floor throughout the whole exercise.
  • Squeeze your thigh muscles and press your abdominal and hip muscles into the floor.
  • Use your lower body to lift your chest off the floor. Do not press your hands into the ground.
  • Squeeze your shoulders and elbow towards one another in order to engage your back fully.
  • Hold this for relatively 20 to 45 seconds

Tip: There should be no wrinkles at the back of your neck. You may use your hands to create length by pulling your body forward but not to push yourself upwards.

Eye of the Needle Pose

Most men have tight hip flexor and extensor muscles. The eye of the needle is among the best men’s yoga
stretches to open up your hip muscles. This exercise also works your back and shoulder muscles.

How to Perform

  • Start by lying on the mat on your back
  • Cross your right ankle over your left thigh just below your left knee. You should feel your hip release.
  • You left leg should be lifted off the ground. Wrap your arms around your left hamstring for support.
  • Your back and head should stay on the floor throughout the pose
  • Hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds and then switch legs.

Corpse Pose

Corpse pose may seem like the simple pose in this routine. However, you may find it quite challenging as it
needs to keep the body as well as your mind still. It is a great cool-down pose and ideally performed at the
end of your routines.

How to Perform:

  • Start by lying on the mat straightening your legs out such that they are a distance apart .
  • Relax your arms, letting them fall apart from your body with your palms facing up.
  • Pull your own shoulder blades relatively own your back to elongate your neck.
  • Close your eyes and relax your whole body.
  • Breathing naturally through the nose, hold this position for about 20 breaths.

Summary

The men’s yoga routine for beginners detailed herein will get you started if you’ve been having the urge to try out yoga. It is worth noting that some position may feel strange and you may get sore a day after the session.

This is natural, as you may have never gotten your body into these positions before. It may take a while to get the perfect alignments rights, but with practice and consistency, you stand to reap the many benefits of yoga.