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Why Athletes Should Do Joga

I designed Joga around the principles of athletic movement and common injuries in sport.

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What is Joga?

When I set out on this mission to get athletes to do yoga, the first obstacle I encountered was their inability to execute traditional yoga postures. This observation was the thought that spearheaded my idea to design a yoga program not only suited for an athlete’s body, but also an athlete’s mind. I designed Joga around the principles of athletic movement and common injuries in sport.

Breathing techniques in Joga

Joga provides breathing techniques that help athletes not only achieve the physical benefits of increased breath volume and recovery but also incorporates techniques that enable the athletes to use breath as a tool to elicit parasympathetic nerve pattern (relaxation response). Stress impedes the body from functioning properly, so by providing the athlete with these tools to learn to relax, they will get better results from the rest of their training program. Relaxation enables all of the systems of the body to function more optimally, so that the nervous system, the digestive system, the endocrine system, the lymphatic system, and the circulatory system – all systems of the body are able to synergize and work better together.

Nurturing athletes

I describe Joga as a program that hides spinach in your piece of chocolate cake. The programs is very physically challenging and the design is intended to expose athletes’ weaknesses, but then follow up with an integrated series of benchmark postures to ensure the athletes are still achieving a physical result. By encouraging a physical result (the chocolate cake), we are then able to start to add the goodness (the spinach) of the emotional, spiritual results that traditional yoga has been doing for years. And this is the true success of my program. I am genuinely concerned for the physical, mental and emotional well being of every athlete. While results matter, it’s more about nurturing a human being.

The intelligence of Joga began to attract intelligent athletes—who realized there is a gap between the mind and body in traditional strength training programs. Joga is not intended to replace any current training, it works with their big picture training program to create a more balanced, well rounded athlete.

Creating balanced athletes

When I talk about big picture, I am talking about the longevity of an athlete. Joga takes into consideration the amount of stress that is put on an athlete’s body, on so many levels: physical, emotional and sometimes even spiritual.
The Joga program encompasses the entire culture of the athlete. It’s not just about what happens on the ice, field or court – it’s about understanding the entire world of action swirling around their lives.

Joga is now available internationally via iTunes and is offered in studios across Canada through the Joga Ambassador Program. The Ambassador Program was created for yoga teachers, sports therapist and doctors who are interested in working specifically with athletes. The Level One Joga certification is offered over a 4-day, 40-hour workshop intensives. The next training is offered in Toronto from November 14th – November 17th 2013.

To learn more about Joga or to sign up for a workshop intensive, visit Joga with Jana

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Uploaded by Chris Surette