At first glance, cycling and yoga may not seem to naturally go hand in hand, however the benefits of practicing yoga off the bike has been linked to some serious on the bike benefits. That’s why we’ve joined up with our friends at La Bruguera de Púbol to offer a yoga & cycling retreat to combine riding and relaxing in the heart of Girona with cycling-specific yoga classes.
The Benefits of Practicing Yoga as a Cyclist
Kirsti Abernethy of Bindi Yoga explains, (Kirsti lives in the beautiful Empordà, has practiced & studied Yoga for over 20 years):
“Cycling is such a regular, repetitive, rhythmic pursuit, that it often creates tension, tightness and chronic pain in participants. Yoga is an ideal, low-impact, low-stress way of addressing these issues. Stability and strength of the core muscles is also critical to delivering power to the legs, which makes Yoga an ideal way to make your cycling body more efficient.”
Breathing is key in cycling – and many riders have no idea this can be trained and improved. Breathing techniques to improve endurance, as well as staying focussed and calm, can be learned through yoga, and applied to cycling.
Also, cycling, either at endurance, challenge or racing levels, is a heavily mental pursuit, and requires focus, energy management, and mental strength to get through the highs and lows of competition and achievement. Yoga again, is ideal for developing riders’ awareness of the needs of their minds, bodies and souls, on and off the bike.”
The Yoga Classes
For these interests in common, yoga teacher Kirsti Abernethy (http://bindiyoga.life ) and cycling coach Mike Duff (La Bruguera de Púbol) have come together to develop a series of classes for cyclists, bringing the benefits of yoga to the world of two wheels.
Kirsti’s Hatha yoga classes include asana (postures), breathing techniques for equilibrium, vinyasa (moving sequences with rhythmic breath), deep relaxation, mantra (chanting) and contemplation. Her teaching is inspired by her constant learning and experience of Qi-Gong, martial arts, Dhrupad (North Indian classical singing) and Indian dance.
Yoga Poses for Cyclists
Here, she demonstrates two yoga poses, and explains their benefit from a cyclist’s perspective:
Benefits for Cyclists: Elongates the thighs, opens up the groin and chest – all areas of tension and tightness in regular cyclists. Brings awareness of how to isolate and release the muscles of the lower back consciously, giving riders the ability to do this on the bike.
Pose: Prasarita Padottanasana
Benefits for Cyclists: Strengthens & lengthens the inner legs & backs of legs, tones abdominal organs, and opens the chest. Also helps to relieve lower back ache.
La Bruguera Eco-Retreat Centre
The setting for these activities is worth a mention – introducing La Bruguera de Púbol. Formerly the home of Catalan artist Casademont “Le Vieux” and his family, it consists of 9 acres of oak and pine forest and gardens, a large villa, a purpose built yoga studio, a forest treatment room and a heated saltwater pool, nestled in the beautiful rolling countryside of the Baix Empordà.
Sustainability is important to the new owners, Mike & Michelle, and they’ve completely renovated the estate’s infrastructure such that electricity is provided from solar panels, heat and hot water from heat pumps or log boilers, and water from on-site wells. Guests can focus on their self-improvement, knowing it comes at no cost to the environment.
Guests can enjoy meals prepared onsite by chef Cabell d’Àngel, with ingredients grown in the estates vegetable gardens. In keeping with the philosophy of sustainability the menu is vegetarian, with each dished designed to contain all the macro-nutrients yogi’s and cyclists require to stay fueled all day.
Experience The Synergy of Yoga & Cycling
If the above has got you interested in the benefits of yoga for cycling then find out more information by following Kirsti & La Bruguera on Instagram:
@labrugueradepubol & @yogakirst or visit them online at labrugueradepubol.com and bindiyoga.life. For any of your cycling needs (or to book a yoga cycling retreat) give us a call on +34 972 649 131 or contact us online.
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