Yoga for Powerlifters: Can Yoga Work for Strength Training?

Yoga for powerlifters! It’s more common than you realize.

Gone are the days when yoga was constrained to better conscience, clarity, and rejuvenated soul sessions. The perception was that it certainly wasn’t made for the big, bulked-up guys. Testosterone Town only included heavy circuit performers, deadlifters, and protein shakes for breakfast. But the tides have turned and there have been reports and documentaries to back up the fact that yoga suits everyone, especially powerlifters.

What most weightlifting trainers fail to understand is that incorporating yoga into their routine will only boost their strength training performance. In addition to that, it aids them in flexibility and mobility.

Core strength

Yoga is known for its core strength building, and each pose, technique, and move is built around these principles. And so, regardless of which asana you do, it will help to strengthen your core strength. Now, this doesn’t mean that the yoga poses are just constrained to your ab muscles. Here, core strength means intra-abdominal pressure, full abdominal muscular region, flanks, pelvis, and transverse abs.

The foundation of yoga remains the strengthening of core muscles and the building of core strength. This is exactly what powerlifters require. Injuries and internal bruising are common while powerlifting, and this is where cost strength works; it strengthens the injury-prone muscles and tendons. By stretching them, yoga teaches powerlifters how to push the limits. This is how yoga enhances the strength of a powerlifter while boosting the intensity.

Imbalance identification

Another tremendous benefit of doing yoga is that each muscle group is targeted. You may call it a unilateral philosophy, but this is how it works. Especially from a powerlifting stance, it helps the person specifically identify and work on each muscle group. This way, powerlifters identify which side of the muscle groups requires more attention. They can determine where to focus their efforts more and where to compensate. Through yoga, it could be easily detected which side has more mobility and which one is the weaker side and needs more work. Now the powerlifter is consciously or unconsciously able to isolate the muscle group and strengthen it. This results in the prevention of muscle imbalances.


Muscular edurance is another important factor that makes or breaks a powerlifter. There are several yoga poses that are started and carried out by holding them for a specific period of time. This further helps the muscles contract, resulting in efficient training. This prepares powerlifters for their strenuous lifting sets and routines. How? Because yoga is a breathe focused practice, oxygen levels in the body move through the muscles with a smoother flow throughout the yoga training and beyond.

Mental strength

While powerlifting revolves mostly around muscle groups, improved performance is incomplete without the equilibrium set between the mind and body. Your lifting sets require strength, but most importantly, balance and concentration. While yoga poses help build core strength and endurance, breathing exercises help you remain relaxed, calm, and focused. This not only promotes better lifting sets but also active recovery. You, as a powerlifter, perform without stress and anxiety bringing you down.

Maximized Performance

With each of the above factors, the powerlifter can perform his or her best. Including yoga in the workout programs enhances their performance to its zenith. The weightlifter is more agile and flexible. Along with that, they are building and strengthening specific muscle groups each time they perform yoga. And now that pain, inflammation, and injuries are a lot less than before, their energy levels are replenished on their own.

With each of the above aspects kept in mind, here are the best yoga poses for powerlifters:

  • Falling Pigeon pose
    • Known for stretching the thighs, hips, psoas, back, groin, and piriformis, the pigeon pose gives the hip flexors a good stretch.
    • This variation is similar to the pigeon pose only in reverse, so there is less pressure on the knee joint. This can be easily done by beginners.
    • Start by relaxing on a yoga mat by lying on your back with your soles touching the mat.
    • Hands should be placed at the sides.
    • Now, slowly and easily, take your right foot and place it above the left knee.
    • And, as you take the position, slightly flex your foot to get a good stretch on your hips.
    • Repeat the same motion with the other leg.
  • Chair pose
    • Chair pose is an amazing yoga asana to stabilize the knees and activate and open the thoracic spine and glutes.
    • Stand straight and make sure your knees are a little bent. Keep your chest elevated. Make sure your belly is tucked slightly in.
    • Slowly lean back by sinking your hips as if you are just about to sit on an imaginary chair.  While you do it, make sure to place your hands on your thighs.
    • This will tighten and strengthen your glutes.
    • Stretch out your hands if you wish to target your upper body.
    • Exhale while you get back to your original position.
  • Crescent Lunge
    • Your quadriceps, groin muscles, and hip flexors are going to thank you for the crescent lunge pose.
    • Take the lunge pose by keeping one leg stretched back and one forward. The forward leg shin should be upright on top of your foot.
    • Place your hands right beneath your shoulders.
    • Next, lift your back leg with your toes balancing it and raise your torso.
    • By this step, your hands should be on your forward leg. This should represent a lunge pose.
    • Lift your body and slowly bring your hands above your head with your back legs stretched and straightened.
    • Gaze upward and you will feel a stretch in your core as well.

The above yoga asanas are the best poses for powerlifters. Each of them requires diaphragmatic breathing that activates muscle recovery. Yoga is proven effective for weightlifters and time-tested regardless of your expertise. Practice them diligently and explore the world of yoga for improved stamina in your powerlifting sets.

About the author

Arun Gupta