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Cardio and Yoga – A Perfect Match!

Cardio has been a huge part of my life for nearly 35 years. I grew up as a dancer and cheerleader and continued both throughout college and beyond. Countless hours were spent at the gym, focusing on endurance and strength training. One thing that I wish was part of my training routine back then was yoga! I first discovered yoga in 2005 at the gym but started practicing religiously at Health Yoga Life about ten years ago!

The past year in quarantine has given me the opportunity to appreciate how complimentary yoga and cardio are to one another. Yoga improves strength, flexibility and reduces stress while cardio improves lung capacity and increases energy. I also love that yoga and cardio can be practiced anywhere, from a tiny studio apartment in Beacon Hill to the basement of a New Hampshire home. (me)

You’ll typically see three, high-intensity rounds in my cardio class, so here are three reasons why cardio and yoga are great compliments to each other.

1. Balance

What’s your favorite balance pose in yoga? My absolute favorite is tree because I love the grounding and calming sensation.  Whether your foot is resting by your ankle or nestled in your inner thigh, strength to hold that tree comes from your core and standing leg. In cardio classes, you’ll fire up that belly (Favorite move – sprinter sit-ups, which is the same elbow to knee) and power up those quads (Favorite move – curtsey squats).

2. Endurance

There’s nothing better than a juicy sun salutation flow to get the blood pumping and sweat flowing. If you’re craving more of that Sun A heart race pace, cardio is where it’s at. From shoulder mobility exercises (Favorite move – dolphin pushups) to high-intensity cardio (Favorite move – fast feet), you may find yourself less winded after that final chaturanga.   

3. Fun

You have the rest of your day to be serious. Class is your time to have fun, laugh, smile and wobble. If you’ve taken a live yoga class with me, I can guarantee you’ve seen me fly out of eagle, face plant in crow or soar down in airplane. We’re human and that’s what makes class fun! A cardio class is the perfect place to embrace your inner child from elementary gym class (Favorite move – jumping jacks). You’ll move and groove to a fun playlist (LizHosman on Spotify) and no class repeats twice, from the moves to the music.

I hope you’ll join me on Monday mornings at 7 am for Cardio n’ Flow (30 minutes cardio, 30 minutes yoga with Robyn) and Wednesday mornings at 7:30 am for Cardio n’ Go (45 minutes cardio).  And if you’ve taken a cardio class already, how has it complimented your yoga practice?

See you on your mat!

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