Hey yogis, let's talk about strength.
Have you heard? "Strength is the new skinny, sexy, beautiful, handsome, healthy..." – you name it.
I have recently celebrated the beginning of my sixties, and the topics of building strength and the importance of strength in yoga are high on my list of priorities, right next to enjoying my family, which includes two very young grandchildren. I need to stay strong in order to keep up with them.
We continue to see mounting scientific evidence that one of the most recommended prescriptions for aging well is a combination of resistance training, aerobic exercise and mobility training. The weights do not have to be very heavy, and safety should be our first concern, but resistance training is highly regarded in order to support our bodies during mobility training, such as yoga and any type of cardio training.
Alignment based yoga teaches us how to watch our form in order to become more aware of everything we are doing and feeling. We can apply that same awareness to whatever we do with weights as well as running, cycling or jumping up and down. In this way, we are taking Yoga with us off the mat and into and throughout our life.
For years, I struggled with neck, shoulder and knee injuries in yoga. I saw chiropractors and physical therapists who educated me and gave me new exercises to do regularly.
For the first thirty years of my yoga journey, I thought I was working towards a balance of strength and flexibility. What I now realize I need is way more stability in my body. Some people might need more flexibility.
For me, weight training is the piece that has finally put it all together in a way that I can understand and apply directly to my yoga practice and my teaching. I am fortunate to be able to work one on one with a very knowledgeable and creative trainer, who has guided me towards more integration for a little over one year now. What a difference a year makes!
Instead of going over the hill, I feel like a new woman because I am making progress with my strength gains. That’s not an easy thing to do at midlife, but now I know it’s possible.
I have always felt most at home in a yoga studio and now I can also work on my own in the gym. Feeling equally strong and flexible in my body is a gift that helps me in every way. Every day I appreciate that gift.
"Feeling equally strong and flexible in my body is a gift that helps me in every way."
– Desirée Rumbaugh
If you are curious to know more about how I integrate what I have learned with weights into my yoga teaching and the importance of strength in yoga, please come to one of my workshops.
Get more information about Desirée and her workshops on her website: