CategoriesWellness Yoga

CrossFit Yoga: Poses for Post WOD

CrossFit Yoga Poses for post open WODSWith the CrossFit Open 2020 starting today we thought we would put together a little guide on CrossFit Yoga poses and stretches you can do after each workout to help with recovery.

The Open is a time where we often really push our bodies to the absolute max in our efforts to compete, obtain PB’s and reach our performance goals. However, we need to ensure that we help our bodies to recover properly in order to avoid injury, reduce aches and pains and to help us stay in good working order for next weeks WOD release!

So to make sure you all have no excuses for not looking after yourselves here are a few CrossFit Yoga poses and stretches you can do POST WOD to help ease off and prevent any soreness.

CrossFit Yoga Poses and Stretches for Post Workout Recovery

crossfit yoga - tricep stretch

1. ARMS – Tricep Stretch

A simple CrossFit Yoga pose that you can do seated or standing. Simply reach with one hand back and down your shoulder blade so that the elbow is pointing upwards. With the other hand, gently push back and down on that elbow to increase the stretch.

Hold for 10 breaths.

Repeat on the other side.

crossfit yoga - eagle arms, low lunge

2. ARMS, SHOULDERS & HIPS – Low Lunge with Eagle Arms

Begin in a low lunge position – right leg forwards, ensuring your knee is above or behind the ankle, left leg back, allowing the knee to come to the floor, untuck the toes so the sole of the foot is facing upwards.  For more stability feel free to widen your stance – the wider your base, the more stable you will be.  Lift out of the pelvis and hips upward and lengthen your spine.

Bring the arms out in front of you, taking the left arm under the right, bending at the elbow and wrapping the hands – if you can’t get a full grip don’t worry.  Inhale to lift the arms upward to increase the stretch, take the pose further into a backbend as you exhale to reach up and over behind.

Hold for 10 breaths.

Repeat on the other side.

crossfit yoga - puppy pose

3. SHOULDERS & UPPER BACK – Extended Childs/Puppy Pose

Option 1 – Extended Childs Pose
From kneeling, touch your big toes together and sit on your heels, then separate your knees about as wide as your hips. Exhale as you fold your torso over and between your thighs, reaching the arms straight out in front of you as far as they can go without lifting your buttocks away from your heels. Try to maintain and promote length in the spine, whilst completely relaxing the body, allowing it to melt, folded, into the ground. Head comes to the floor, if you can, just in front of your knees. Stay here for 10 breaths or more.

Option 2 – Progress to full Puppy Pose

From extended childs pose, walk your hands out in front of you…

  • Stage 1 – bring your forehead to the ground.
  • Stage 2 – see if you can get deeper and take your chin to the ground, eye gaze toward the front of the mat.
  • Stage 3 – go deeper again until you have lowered your chest down toward the mat.

Keep your hips over your knees. Draw your shoulder blades back and down, reach your hips up high toward the ceiling, creating a deeper backbend.  Allow your neck to relax. Stay here for 10 breaths.

crossfit yoga - half splits

4. HAMSTRINGS & GLUTES – Half Splits

Come to your hands and knees, step your right foot forward between your hands. The left knee should remain on the ground with the top of the left foot on the ground. Flex your right foot, coming up onto the heel and extending your toes back toward you, and begin to straighten your right leg as much as you comfortably can. Keep your hips square and stacked over your left knee. Inhale to lengthen your spine, and as you exhale, begin to fold over your right leg. Keep drawing your right heel back while reaching your chest forward, and draw your shoulder blades down your back and away from your ears.

Hold for 10 breaths.

Repeat on the other side.

crossfit yoga - down facing dog

5. HAMSTRINGS, CALVES, ANKLES, SHOULDERS, BACK – Down-Facing Dog

Come to your hands and knees, hands slightly forward of your shoulders, knees under hips. Exhale to tuck your toes and lift knees away from the floor, pushing your sit bones high towards the ceiling and creating an upside-down V-shape.  Heels may or may not come to the ground, feel free to take a slight bend in the knees if the stretch is too much. Head should hang loosely, crown towards the ground. Now push your head through your arms, whilst pressing evenly through the palms to of your hands.  You should rotate your shoulders outwards to create space between the shoulder blades, broadening your back, wrapping your lateral muscles around your ribcage for stability. Feel free to pedal the feet to ease off tight hamstrings.  Aim to stay in this pose for at least 10 breaths.

crossfit yoga - leg breaker

6. QUADS – Leg Breaker Pose

From Kneeling, step your right leg forward, leaving your left leg long on the ground.  Reach back with your right hand, whilst lifting the left foot, bending at the knee, and reach for your foot, aiming to clasp around the front o the ankle.  Bring the heel towards the buttock, you should feel a stretch in the front of your left quad (leg).  If you can’t reach the foot, you could use a strap or wall to assist.

Hold for 10 breaths.

Repeat on the other side.

If you are comfortable here, you can take the pose further into monkey twist.

Come down onto your left forearm, keeping hold of the left foot in your right hand.  Flex the foot so that it is active and kick back into the hand, twisting through the shoulders and taking the eye gaze behind towards the back foot.

crossfit yoga - leg stack forward fold

7. HIP FLEXORS & PASOAS – Leg Stack, Seated Forward Fold

Come to seated, knees bent, feet flat on the floor in front of you. Take the left leg, and bring it under the right, aligning your shin parallel to the front of the mat. Now take the right leg, over the left leg, stacking the right foot on top of the left knee.  This should also mean your right knee is stacked on top of the left foot.  If this is unachievable, simply come to a crossed leg seated position or take bound-ankle pose.

inhale as you lift through the crown of the head lengthening the spine and lifting out of the hips, exhale as you fold forward over the legs reaching the hands out in front of you as far as you can go.

Hold for 10 breaths.

Repeat on the other side.

crossfit yoga - pigeon pose

8. HIP FLEXORS & GLUTES – Half Pigeon Pose

Come to your hands and knees.  Bring the right leg in front of you bending at the knee and placing it down on the ground at a 45-degree angle towards the right, front, corner of the mat.  Slide the left leg back as far as you can go, toes untucked. Make sure the hips remain left and square the front of the mat.  The aim is to get the right bum cheek to the floor and the left hip should rest on top of your right heel.  Use blocks as required. If you are comfortable, stay here. If you would like to increase the intensity of the stretch allow the body to fold forwards towards the ground in front until you are completely flat on the ground.

Hold for 10 breaths.

Repeat on the other side.

crossfit yoga - supine abdominal twist

9. SPINE, LOWER BACK, GLUTES – Supine Abdominal Twist

Lay flat on your mat.  Take your arms out to the side in a ‘T’ shaped position, palms facing down. Inhale to lift the legs together bending at the knees 90 degrees. Exhale to drop the legs over the left side of the body. Shoulders remain flat to the ground. Inhale to turn the head so that you look at the back of the right hand. Stay here for 10 breaths.  Inhale to lift the head and legs back to the centre. Repeat on the other side.

To increase the stretch you can either…

  1. If your knees are not on the ground, gently push down on the outer thigh with the opposite hand
  2. If your knees are on the ground, try extending the top leg and cradling the foot in the opposite hand.

Hold for 10 breaths.

Repeat on the other side.

Want to try a class?!

Flotality runs several yoga classes, courses and workshops during the week, including our regular drop-in FLO & Restore Class every Thursday morning 11:30 am at The Yoga Room, Blackwater, Camberley.  Advance booking is essential, first-timers can enjoy this class for just £5, or £10 pay as you go for regulars. Message us to reserve your space.

CAN’T MAKE IT?!

Have you ever considered booking a private yoga session?

Designed specifically for your needs and ability, private sessions can be enjoyed 1 on 1 or as a group if you have friends who would like to come too and help split the cost (sometimes it works out cheaper than the public classes)!

Specialists in CrossFit Yoga

We specialise in CrossFit Yoga for fitness and recovery – so we are a little different from your usual yoga teachers as we really understand your sport and what the body requires to remain in tip-top condition.

Get in touch with me today to book at a time that suits you best.

View our full schedule here…

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CategoriesYoga

Yoga Poses for Crossfit

Here at Flotality, we can’t rave enough about how good yoga is for any fitness routine, but especially for Crossfitters, and yet when you ask a group of Crossfit athletes ‘who actually practices yoga?’ you will be surprised how few do.

Incorporating regular yoga practice into your training routine alongside any other sports that you do, not only helps to reduce recovery time between sessions, it also helps to prevent injury as well as enhance your athletic performance too – so yoga should be a no brainer right?

Perceptions on yoga are gradually changing, with many professional athletes embracing it as a vital part of their training programs too.  Unfortunately though it still sometimes has this ‘hippie’ images which can be off-putting, even to those who would benefit from it most.  Yoga doesn’t have to be ‘hippie’ or ‘spiritual’ and that is exactly what our classes here at Flotality avoid.  Instead we promote yoga as an active form of relaxation for physical health and mental wellness, designing classes with the athlete or sport enthusiast  in mind.

Crossfit is one of our favourite forms of training but often gets a bad rap for causing injuries, many of which could be prevented.  We don’t blame the sport for causing injuries, what we do blame however are the athletes who don’t pay proper attention to building the core strength of all the muscles used within a movement or perhaps don’t cool down properly after workouts.

For example, shoulder injuries are probably the most common.  Most pain in shoulder injuries are caused by impingements in the rotator cuff or muscle imbalances.  These types of injury are so easily preventable with a few key movements that can be built into your daily workouts or routines.

Essentially for Crossfitters, mixing yoga into their routine is a perfect “ying” to their high-intensity “yang.

Below we have listed our top 9 yoga poses for Crossfit athletes, their benefits and purpose.

Our top 9 Yoga Poses for Crossfit

Plank

Plank poses help to build strength and stability in the core and shoulder girdle.  Planks are a core strengthening powerhouse and should form part of your staple diet when it comes to accessory movements to accompany your main WODs and strength workouts.

yoga poses for cross fit - plank  

There are many variations of the plank pose that you could try, from the basic high or low plank to side planks, and forearm planks.  You could also play with balance too by lifting a hand or foot of the ground, or even both (alternate).

Down Facing Dog

When done correctly, the down facing dog pose should release tension from the upper trapezius, build upon arm and lateral strength as well as stretch and loosen the hamstrings, lower back and calves.

Down facing dog would be an ideal movement to try out after a workout that may have included running, box jumps, double-unders or explosive lifts like thrusters.

You can also use down facing dog and plank together in a kind of mini flow to build strength and warm up – from down facing dog, roll forwards through the spine into high plank, hold for 10 seconds, option to add a press or move to low plank, push back to down dog.

Warrior 1 

Warrior 1 is an amazing movement for stabilising the scapular and pelvic girdle and strength building in the erector spine and deltoids.  It also helps increase flexibility in the hip flexors and quads, which in turn can help to prevent your knee from turning inwards in other squatting or lunging positions within your WODs – a massive help for knee injuries. And finally it aids in opening the chest too.

Eagle Arms

Another pose that should form part of your staple diet in post workout stretches and is so good for your shoulders especially.  Eagle (arms) pose helps with shoulder and back flexibility and mobility, releasing tightness from the shoulders – which is probably what most keen Crossfitters need!

yoga poses for cross fit - eagle arms

Pigeon

This a must do pose for runners, but will benefit most athletes or fitness fanatics too, so add it to your cool down lists! Pigeon is a great pose for increasing flexibility in the spine, hips, quads, abs, glutes and shoulders.  It’s also one of the few stretches that can help stretch off the IT band too – tight IT bands are something that many runners or Crossfit athletes suffer from. In terms of injury prevention, this pose can help protect your knees too from turning inwards on those squats.

  

Lizard Lunge

Lizard lunge is similar to a normal lunge but really puts emphasis on stretching out those hip flexors.  This is a brilliant movement to incorporate into your cool down after running, WODS that include box jumps or lots of squatting movements.

Supine Ab Twist

A lovely and very relaxing pose that many people use to stretch off after workouts and for good reasons too.  This pose helps release tension held in the back and hips.  It also helps to strengthen the core too – bonus!

Standing forward fold

A staple diet, basic movement and perhaps one of the best poses to start your cool down with after any workout.  Helping release the hamstrings and stretch out the spine, a simple standing (or seated) forward fold is one of the best and easiest movements to help increase flexibility and mobility in these areas.

 

There are a few variations you can do for this pose;

  • Rag doll – standing forward fold but without forcing your hands to the floor, simply hold your elbows in the opposite hands, hang and gently rock side to side to ease off any tightness.
  • Seated – inhale to lift and sit tall brining your arms above your head, then exhale to reach and fold forwards brining your chest towards you thighs, maintaining length in the back and neck.
  • Standing variation with hands interlaced behind the back, helps pull tight shoulders back and open.

 

Camel

Last but not least, Camel pose – brilliant for opening and releasing the chest, shoulders quads and spine.  Again there are a few variations you may want to try with this pose such as Half Camel where you reach back one side at a time, or if you want progression, you could get a deeper backbend by taking your hands, from prayer pose, up and over all the way to the floor.

  

Want to have yoga sessions held at your Crossfit Box?

If you are a the owner of a Crossfit Box in the South East, UK and would like to be able to offer yoga classes to your members please get in touch with Harriet for more information. We have lots of options available and would love to help plan, design and/or run classes from your box!

T: 07803 146 960

E: hello@flotality.co.uk