Can you hold your position on the bike through the line you've committed to, as the tyres squirm, the pedals jump and the handlebars try to tear themselves from your grip under the pressure of the terrain? If you feel you have room for improvement, you don’t need a Bosu ball, a wobble board or any fancy equipment to refine your balance and core control skills. You just need your bodyweight, the ability to stay focused and some simple but effective yoga poses.
Although yoga is best known for its restorative and flexibility-enhancing benefits, it is also technically challenging, which makes it the ideal training ground to work on your balance and proprioception. Because once you have the strength, stamina and cojones locked in, improving your kinaesthetic awareness and body control is what is going to give you the edge!Moving your body with precision and control“Motor control, at its simplest, is the ability to perform an action with precision and accuracy, along with a sensation of ease. It’s what makes efficient movement possible.” Jarlo Ilano
The 5 dynamic poses that I am going to demonstrate in this article are designed to:
- Activate the deep core stabilisers.
- Increase your agility, body control and accuracy of movement.
- Integrate muscles throughout your body to work together.
- Improve your coordination and kinaesthetic awareness.
- Strengthen the wrists, shoulders, obliques, abs, lower back and hips.
- Protect your joints.
- Quiet and sharpen your mind.
- Decrease your risk of injury.
The aim of incorporating yoga poses like this into your training each week is greater smoothness and fluidity in your riding, the ability to put your body exactly where you want it and flow into more expansive ranges of motion and hopefully, though it’s never guaranteed, to reduce your risk of injury. 5 Yoga Poses for Balance and Body Control1. Side Plank Rotations
This dynamic Side Plank variation strengthens the obliques as well as the shoulders, lower back and hips. Keep your core tight throughout the movement. 2. Downward Dog Spider Planks
This dynamic Plank exercise strengthens the abs, obliques and shoulders and opens up the hips. Exhale as you bring your knee forward and inhale to lift your leg back up. 3. Warrior 3 Eagle
This Warrior 3 variation trains balance, proprioception, core strength, opens up the hips and stretches the backs of the shoulders. See how precise and controlled you can make your transitions. 4. Crow Pose
Crow is a challenging arm balance that builds core and shoulder strength, improves balance and opens up the hips. The key is to get your knees as high up high as you can on your arms. 5. Lower Abs Leg Circles
This pose is great for strengthening the lower abdominals as well as the lower back, deep abs and obliques. Draw your lower back down towards the mat throughout the exercise.Practice these poses several times a week until you feel that you can articulate every part of the movement with accuracy and precision. And if you're looking for more material like this, you can sign up for your free month on my website and start following the full Mobility Mastery series today!