Bro-Yoga featured on CTV Atlantic

Bro-Yoga featured on CTV Atlantic

CTV Atlantic
Published Monday, May 4, 2015 5:30PM ADT
Last Updated Monday, May 4, 2015 5:41PM ADT

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Stress relief, increased flexibility, strength, and range of motion are just some of the benefits of yoga – a popular practice often thought of as a woman’s activity. However, a Maritime yoga studio is looking to change that with a class that is geared toward men.

At Rio Pilates and Yoga Studio in Halifax, men interested in yoga can take a class called ‘Bro-Yoga.’

“It’s more of an athletic yoga style, so it’s going to get up your cardio and going to give you some endurance and some strength training,” says owner and instructor Connie McInnes.

McInnes says the unique class moves outside traditional yoga poses.
“We incorporate jumping lunges, we do pushups, so it’s definitely strength heavy.”

The more athletic style also focuses less on the mental aspect typically associated with the practice.

“It’s great for men because they don’t feel like they’re having to do the spiritual, philosophical side of yoga and they’re still getting a great workout, but they’re getting the benefits of a regular yoga class,” says McInnes.
Class participant Michael Blades says it didn’t take long to notice the benefits and the class is a nice supplement to long distance running and high intensity workouts.

“It’s very different from those types, but of course variety is important and you have to have balance in what you’re doing so it’s good for that purpose,” says Blades. “Also, it’s very relaxing at the same time.”
Bruno Cohen is another Bro-Yoga regular who uses the class to shake-up his routine.

“I do a lot of CrossFit and Olympic weight lifting and stuff like that, so it was just really good cross training for mobility and stretching and building on accessory muscles,” says Cohen.

McInnes says those often overlooked accessary muscles are front and centre in Bro-Yoga.

“If you’re doing cross fit or weights at the gym, you’re targeting a lot of your major muscles, your larger muscle groups and what we try to do in these classes is work on the accessory or postural muscles which especially men don’t get to in a lot of their workouts,” says McInnes.

McInnes says response from the bros has been positive and it’s one of her most successful classes.

“We get all kinds of new people here, but we also get a really strong athletic group of people here. So it’s just bringing people together that wouldn’t necessarily be in the same space anywhere else,” says McInnes.

“It’s very social and it’s nice to be in a setting with some other people of like yoga abilities,” says Blades.

As word spreads, it’s not a stretch to expect more and more brogis to join in the practice.