“MAD: Marked by intense and often chaotic activity.” This is what you’ll find on our floor, and it’s likely what keeps you coming back for more. But does that mean you should be moving intensely and chaotically every single time you workout? Certainly not. That’s one of the many reasons why we are MAD for yoga.
Cheesy puns aside, we consider the practice of yoga to be very much apart of the #MADlifestlye. We’ll point you to our “Perfect Week”, where - if you’re attending MADabolic on an unlimited basis - we prescribe 4-5 visits per week as the optimal dosage. But what about the remaining 2-3 days? This is where a combination of passion-driven activity as well as recovery takes its rightful place in your routine. And we’re not talking about a “sit on your ass all day” type of recovery (though there may be times and days where this is necessary). We’re talking about active recovery. A walk. An easy bike ride. Playing outside with your kids. And DUH….yoga.
Committing an active recovery or non-strength training day to an hour of vinyasa, bikram, deep stretch, or restorative yoga (or whatever your favorite practice might be), can be highly beneficial and complementary to your committed strength training routine. From a physical standpoint, yoga helps enhance strength, posture, flexibility, and balance. Consider the toll that some of our explosive, power-based movement patterns take on your body. Contrasting that with the slower flow and longer poses of yoga activates your slow twitch muscle fibers, striking a favorable balance with the intense and chaotic nature of the MADness. Furthermore, the flexibility and balance that yoga promotes will only help your mobility with respect to strength-based movement patterns. Think about how yoga-based hip openers could influence your full range of motion squat, or how all those unilateral standing postures might improve the balance of your single leg deadlifts.
Yoga can also help heighten mental equilibrium and self awareness. You’ll oftentimes hear your yoga instructor guide you towards “setting an intention” at the start of your practice, paired with encouragement and tips on properly utilizing your breath. Taking this time to intentionally slow down, quiet your mind, and simply be present is a difficult skill to hone. However, once you begin to grasp and master the concept, you can start translating it to your life off the mat. Maybe you bring it home. Or to your place of work. Or maybe even you channel yoga-inspired breathing techniques and focus to the MAD floor to increase the power behind your swing. Or snatch. Or deadlift. Or press. Or squat. You see where we’re going with this…
Bottom line: the physical and emotional effects of yoga can be powerful when coupled with your weight training regimen, and we’re all for it. Maybe next time you drop in for some MADness, ask your community leader or trainer for a recommendation on his/her favorite local studio!