Only Elite Quarterbacks Do Yoga
Ballet is one often talked about method of helping athletes increase their range of motion, but Green Bay Packers QB Aaron Rodgers is taking a different path. The Super Bowl XLV MVP started taking up yoga during the 2014 offseason and it is having great results for the perennial Pro Bowler.
It has been well documented that Rodgers missed considerable time in 2013 due to a collarbone injury sustained against the Chicago Bears. However, one footnote that is being overlooked is the fact that Rodgers turned the "dreaded" age of 30 this offseason. Rodgers is not getting any younger and he hopes to prevent injuries any way he can in order to prolong his career - even yoga. The quarterback believes that yoga has increased his flexibility and will help prevent injuries as he continues to get older. The weight room has also seen less of Rodgers this offseason due to his yoga adventure. Rodgers admitted to spending less time in the weight room, especially shying away from heavy shoulder lifiting this offseason.
However, the yoga is not just helping Rodgers' flexibility - it has been good for his weight too. Rodgers has dropped 11 pounds this offseason as a result of his newfound interest. This will put him at his lowest playing weight of his career, which is a great way to start the year. Rodgers has always been a mobile quarterback during his time in the league, and his ability to scramble is another fine part of his game. Losing 11 pounds is a big plus for Rodgers and should only increase his ability to move, both inside and outside of the pocket.
Rodgers is trying to do whatever he can to stay healthy and help put the Packers in prime position to make a deep playoff run. While game film, practice and training camp will certainly help get him ready for the season, yoga has been a great starting point. A healthy Rodgers makes the Packers a huge force in the NFC for teams such as the San Francisco 49ers and the reigning Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks to compete with. With his increased flexibility and weight loss, Rodgers is as healthy as ever entering the 2014 campaign.
If he can make a considerable impact this season, it may open the door for some of Rodgers' teammates to try their hand at yoga as well. During this time next year, the headlines could very well be focused on the Packers owning their own yoga studio with Rodgers serving as lead Sensei.