Yoga for Sports –

Yoga for Sports Programs —

Dana Santas CSCS, E-RYT, creator of Radius Yoga Conditioning (RYC), CNN Health yoga expert and sports mobility coach, has extensive experience creating team- and athlete-specific mobility programs in professional sports through her work with numerous teams and hundreds of athletes and coaches in MLB, the NFL, NBA, NHL and MLS, including the Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, Pittsburgh Pirates, Philadelphia Phillies, Tampa Bay Rays, Cleveland Indians, Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds, Toronto Blue Jays, Milwaukee Brewers, Arizona Diamondbacks, Washington Nationals, Colorado Rockies, Boston Celtics, Orlando Magic, Charlotte Bobcats, New England Patriots, Washington Redskins, Cleveland Browns, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, New Jersey Devils, Detroit Red Wings, Toronto Maple Leafs, Florida Panthers, Minnesota Wild, Philadelphia Flyers and Chivas USA. She also has experience with triathletes, cyclists, runners and golfers, and has conducted golf conditioning workshops at pro venues, including the Tournament Players Club (TPC). Dana’s application of yoga to sports is very specific and science-based–nothing like “traditional” yoga. For more info, check out her article on “The Five Biggest Mistakes Athletes Make with Yoga.”

To learn more about Dana’s sought-after approach to applying yoga-based techniques into sports training, read her article, “Yoga for Athletes: Why Activation and Inhibition Matter More Than Stretching.”

Although RYC specializes in working with professional athletes, clients also include serious collegiate, amateur and youth athletes, as well as High School and College Teams. For information regarding a specific sport, select it from the Sports drop-down menu. To learn about youth athlete/team programs, visit the Yoga for Youth Sports page.

RYC yoga for sports programs are available in a variety of formats, all customizable according to the team or athlete’s needs.  For private yoga for athletes training, check out the Private Training page. For yoga for sports teams, programs range from Training Camp Clinics, and Strength & Conditioning and Athletic Training Staff Inservice Programs, to ongoing sessions/consultation/retainer work (available both in- and off-season) to the creation of customized sport-specific yoga videos and manuals (Team Inservice Programs generally include manuals and videos). Work with teams can focus on any number of areas, including, but not limited to, complementing other conditioning, rehab facilitation, recovery programs, sport-specific mobility and stability (i.e., t-spine mobility, pelvic function/hip mobility, scapular stability, posterior chain flexibility, etc.), PRI-based breathing techniques, meditation for focus and sleep facilitation, and dysfunctional movement assessment and corrective exercise programming. Any combination of onsite sessions, online Skype/Facetime sessions and manual & video deliverables can be created to accommodate a team’s needs.

Access to the Private Client Portal ensures quick downloads of all team deliverables and accessibility for all designated players and staff (i.e., all staff & athletes can download RYC videos to their iPhones/droids, iPads/tablets, and computers). DVDs of custom sport-specific yoga programs are also available with copyright agreements for duplication and distribution to all team members/staff.

RYC is based in Tampa Bay but training is conducted throughout the U.S. and internationally; inquire regarding online options that can bridge the distance gap to keep travel fees at a minimum. Mats and props (blocks & straps) required for sessions are available for purchase or rental.

Unlike other forms of yoga that claim benefits to athletes, RYC never focuses on teaching yoga for athletes as a traditional set sequence of postures. RYC also never claims it should be an athlete’s only source of conditioning; yoga can’t replace other parts of an athlete’s training program (i.e., agility drills, weight training, plyometrics, cardio, etc.). Instead, all RYC yoga for sports teams and yoga for athletes programs are custom designed to meet the needs of each athlete’s sport and body, while also complementing other conditioning and treatments in the context of the playing schedule (training camp, in-season or off-season). This is accomplished through consultation with all training, medical and coaching staff involved in the athlete’s and/or team’s conditioning.

One of the major benefits of RYC Yoga for Sports Programs is the correction of imbalances brought on by the sport’s particular movements (and associated injuries); the compensation of one area of the body weakens another, so restoring movement along the kinetic chain increases stability and mobility while decreasing the risk of injury. But that’s not all. Enhancing balance and strengthening the core (including pelvic/hip function) creates a stable foundation for transferring strength and flexibility into movements with even greater force, power and range.  And don’t forget the mental game—every sport has one. That’s why RYC uses special techniques to train athletes to link body, mind and breath in a way that heightens awareness and clarity to effectively avoid mental stress and hone their focus during play. Also, strengthening the mind and body connection through proprioceptive exercises in all planes of motion enhances neuromuscular efficiency, which increases body responsiveness/awareness, control, and accuracy of movement. All of these benefits can translate directly into better play and longer careers!

Additionally, Dana’s proprietary “Eye of the Hurricane” mental focusing/yoga nidra techniques have been adapted for use to facilitate sleep (which is often an issue for athletes with demanding game and grueling travel schedules) as well as integrated into concussion rehab programs.

For information regarding a specific sport, select it from the Yoga for Sports Programs drop-down menu. To learn about youth athlete/team programs, visit the Yoga for Youth Sports page.