It concerns me that the information about stretching + athletic training is still a confused action-subject.
Most yoga classes include some form of stretching--passive stretching is a biggie--and therefore disrupt our proprioceptive mechanisms. In other words: the way our body knows where it is in space and in relationship to itself and environment is "off."
This is great news if one is trying to adapt to new movement patterns and posture. This feeling of "being a little off" is great proprioceptive data that allows us to make little corrections throughout the day. PTs know this well. If I wrap you in kinesio tape after making a change in your perception of your movement, the tape will act as a reminder for the next few days to pay attention and self correct your posture/movement. It's enough of that "off" feeling to provide you immediate feedback.
Anyone who owns a meat thermometer knows that it has to be calibrated. We subject it to a particular kind of treatment [putting it in boiling water] to calibrate it [turning the screw to set the needle at 212].
When I go to a yoga class, I subject my body/tissue/ligaments to a particular treatment [heat, stretching] and then [passively] calibrate--spend the rest of the day letting my brain figure out how to navigate again under new circumstances and perform basic human tasks.
Maybe I learn that walking stairs feels new, or my neck feels longer...I notice because my proprioception is different than usual, I make changes on the fly because I have the feedback and so the calibrating happens.
If we subject ourselves to the high demands of athletic training or competition [impact, explosive movements, quick turns, stopping quickly] after a yoga session, we run the risk of injuring ourselves. We've not yet had the chance to normalize these new ways of moving.
I worked with a grade 3 sprain the other day. Training for a triathalon, this athlete took a yoga class and then went running. A rolled ankle later, she was looking at 6 months of PT and cancelling out of her competition. Fast forward 6 months: she now begins again, slowly, training to run. Six months of lost training, and no athletic goals except healing. Bummer.
How about torn ACLs? Too many to count. Now we're talking surgery, rehab, and training by relearning movement patterns.
I recommend my athletes use their yoga practice as a recovery day or after their workouts as a mover of lactic acid and fluids and as a brain state change.
Love your yoga but PLEASE don't do it before your [hardstyle] training.
Athletes, yoga teachers, bodyworkers: want to learn more? YES!
SAVE THE DATE: June 15-16 Sat/Sun.: 10am-4pm
Shoot me a comment [below] if you're not yet on the email list. Info sent out today!