Yoga can definitely stress your muscles. I pulled something last fall and it took about 3 weeks to heal. One thing with yoga though is to not overdo it; it's not just for stretching but for relaxation.
If yoga didn't work the muscles, then there would be no " beginner " phase. Even with weights you can do this. I could curl 50 lbs. over and over ... or I could just curl the weight halfway, and hold it for 30 seconds. This is static exercise. Your muscles are contracted, and working, but you aren't moving them. It seems easy at first, but you get sore, and while you are holding those yoga poses, you are doing the same thing. Your muscles are working to support that pose, and you are stressing them, so they tear, and rebuild stronger. This is why you are sore ( DOMS ). This will allow you to eventually move beyond " beginner " yoga.
I used to be on a competitive weightlifting team, and we all decided to do a yoga class because a friend was running the class. We had 5 guys, and 1 girl, and one of the guys could deadlift over 600, and the girl could bench over 200. None of us finished the class. It was too hard. We were trembling in the first 15 minutes, and sweating like mad. This was an " intermediate " course..lol
Treat the yoga the way you would a weight training session. Take a day off, or do straight cardio the day after your yoga. So if you do all 3, do a day of weight training, a day of cardio, then a day of yoga. Then I would suggest a day off, but if you want to exercise every day, I would do another cardio, so the muscles can recuperate, and grow stronger. Don't do yoga/weight training, on consecutive days.
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current weight: 179.6
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5/28/14 11:48 A
"It really does take quite a bit of strength to go from high plank to low plank to up facing dog to down facing dog in a nice smooth motion."
THIS! I've been doing yoga for 8 weeks and I STILL CANNOT DO THIS MOVE! I don't have the upper body strength for it, I think, which means I need to up my upper body strength training workouts. I'm fine with the majority of the warrior poses now but this move is something that, right now, I feel I'll never master (even though I love down dog more than anything).
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360 5/27/14 9:01 P
"It really does take quite a bit of strength to go from high plank to low plank to up facing dog to down facing dog in a nice smooth motion. With time and regular practice, your body will feel less achy."
Goodness, that's the truth! I'm going on 10 weeks in my yoga practice (4-5 days a week at a studio), and I still can't do chaturanga dandasana smoothly. I'm still lacking in the necessary upper body strength and core strength to keep myself from needing to touch the floor. But I'm getting stronger every week!
Yoga absolutely can cause soreness! I've felt it in almost every part of my body at some point. It's my absolute favorite thing to do--it's the one thing I never, ever make excuses to skip--so the mild soreness never bothers me when it happens. In the short time I've been practicing, it has already had an amazing impact on my fitness and my mental state. It has truly affected every aspect of my life. In addition to noticeable gains in fitness, I'm more aware of myself, more forgiving of myself, and more accepting of myself. I'm more present in the moment, and less distracted. It is had a more positive impact on my depression than talk therapy, CBT therapy, and EMDR therapy. I find myself focusing on my breathing and posture in everyday life situations outside the studio.
Sorry to derail a bit--I am just so in love with yoga I could go on and on!
Anyway, just be sure you're focused on your breath and on proper alignment and aren't pushing yourself farther than your body can go. Muscle soreness from exercise is one thing, but injury is quite another!
EXERCISE BECAUSE YOU LOVE YOUR BODY, NOT BECAUSE YOU HATE IT.
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current weight: 177.9
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570 5/27/14 11:29 A
I started getting into a yoga routine last week and I was sore as well. If you're like me, and starting with less than great balance you really work those small stabilizer muscles, as well as just holding your body weight with your larger muscle groups. That's why I like it so much, it helps work on two things I need to focus on the most: flexibility, and strength.
Highest: 178lbs Current: 128lbs Goal: Maintaining & Toning. “You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.” ~Margaret Thatcher
Yoga can indeed cause muscle soreness especially if you are just starting out or when one pushes themselves very hard. When you stretch and move muscles in new ways you can definitely feel it and sometimes you can hurt a bit. But to me it is sort of a good kind of workout ache. I would recommend taking a day or two off and expect it to get better with each session.
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3/1/14 3:32 P
Most people don't realize that there are many yoga poses which do require quite a bit of strength. Did you do planks or side planks ? Even trying to stay in down facing dog for a sustained period can make my muscles shake.
If you're new to yoga, what you're experiencing is not unusual. There are people who think that yoga is just about increasing flexibility. Nope, yoga goes beyond that. A good yoga class will not only help increase your flexibility, it will also increase your strength, stamina, endurance, coordination and balance.
It really does take quite a bit of strength to go from high plank to low plank to up facing dog to down facing dog in a nice smooth motion. With time and regular practice, your body will feel less achy.
And don't completely discount that tennis match you had. a vigorous game of tennis could cause a person to get achy too. We assume that once our muscles adapt, we won't experience DOMs after a workout. but that's not true either. When we do something that challenges our muscles in a way that they aren't adapted to, we'll experience DOMs.
What to do for now ? Some light cardiovascular exercise and continued stretching will help.
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9,633 3/1/14 2:37 P
Sore muscles are usually caused by microscopic tears in the muscle fibers. While yoga may seem easy, anyone who's done it can tell you that indeed, it's tougher than it looks! You are using your muscles in unaccustomed ways. It will take time to adapt; for me, it took a couple of weeks.
Rest days are important. Make sure you don't overdo it! Rest days are when those tears heal, and your body gets stronger.
Heather Writer, mother, wife, and breadwinner. I love to run, but running doesn't love me, so I'm switching to my low-impact bike.
I just started a beginning yoga class and absolutely love it. But, I am very surprised with my level of soreness! At first I thought my sore muscles were from a tough tennis match, as my yoga class is very mild. We go through a series of poses, then spend alot of time laying flat and meditating. It is very peaceful and doesn't feel as if I'm working out, which is appealing! I went to class yesterday (my 3rd class in two weeks) and woke up today, again, incredibly sore... everywhere!! Is it common to be sore from beginning yoga? If so, how long does it typically take before your body adusts?
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