The Eagle FC 2002 Girls team maintains an extremely busy, competitive, and at a national level game schedule. Our Eagle FC schedules can be very demanding. Through this experience it quickly became obvious the team needed to find ways to recover between the competitions. It was necessary to improve the ways the team recovered physically and more importantly mentally. Research shows that top professional and soccer athletes continue to turn to Yoga for this type of recovery, as well as, to extend their careers. Below are the top overall benefits of Yoga:
Top 10 Benefits of Yoga
- Improves Flexibility
- Builds Strength
- Increases Muscle Tone and Definition
- Improves Balance
- Supports Joint Health
- Prevents Back Pain
- Teaches Better Breathing
- Fosters Mental Calmness
- Reduces Stress
- Increases Self Confidence
All of these benefits are well understood and documented but the Eagle FC Team desired to apply Yoga to soccer and specifically to physical and mental recovery. There are more competitions, more travel, less time between competitions, and higher demands than ever in the sport of soccer. Recovery is a massive variable in both an individual’s and a team’s success. When battling fatigue and still trying to maintain fitness, everyone looks for new ways to recover.
Perhaps one of the most neglected areas in sports is the psychosocial aspect within all teams. With all the sorts of daily stressors, meditation and relaxing techniques seem to be talked about with more regularity. Yoga’s attention to breathing techniques and bringing people to the present moment are some highly underestimated benefits for team sports. With mindset truly making or breaking top athletes, it is necessary that we begin to look at ways of improving this area.
Beyond the physical realm of yoga, some often-overlooked benefits can include:
- Increased focus
- Increased mental clarity
- Learning to detach from negative feelings/emotions
- Bringing intention, purpose, and motivation
Based on the research that was discovered and understood benefits The Impact pushed forward to finds ways to apply Yoga. The team was looking for a post-game, off day competition and after showcase / tournament routines. For help, the team turned to the Drip 105 Hot Studio and Diane Simpson for help, as well as, the leadership provided by three existing players to implement such routines. These sessions can include the use of yoga techniques that include breathing, and mental imagery, along with tailored postures and positions to assist players with recovery.
Six World Cup Players who swear by Yoga (see link) http://blog.guavapass.com/2018/06/28/6-world-cup-players-swear-by-yoga/
How can your team find out more about implementing Yoga with your team?