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Beginner Yoga For Men With NYC’s Kristin McGee

By Marc Perry / February 20, 2016

As I mention in the video, Yoga can be very intimidating for guys, especially guys who are not particularly flexible.

The following are 3 beginner Yoga poses from celebrity Yoga instructor Kristin McGee that are dynamic because you can flow from one pose to another seamlessly and smoothly.  While these are beginner poses, don’t be alarmed if you have trouble doing them.  In fact, when I took my first Yoga class, I was seriously struggling and sweating profusely as the petite girls around me looked like they were about to fall asleep they were so relaxed.

I don’t do Yoga classes all the time, but I think just learning more about Yoga and incorporating some of the movements into your normal strength training regimen (at the beginning, or end) will improve your recovery, relaxation, and range of motion, so it’s very beneficial for your health.

Beginner Yoga Pose #1: Chaturanga

Yoga Pose Instructions

Starting in a plank pose, which is like a push up position but with hands slightly lower than chest level, lower your body down to the floor keeping your torso straight until an inch, or two above the floor.  Your elbows come straight back behind you, not outwards.

In the photo above, my hands are not low enough, as the forearms should be more perpendicular with the ground, like in the photo to the right that shows perfect form.

Benefits: This movement can strengthen the arms and wrists and engages the core as well.  It’s like a moving plank.

Beginner Yoga Pose #2: Upward Facing Dog

Yoga Pose Instructions

Lying face down on the floor, stretch your legs back with the tops of your feet flush with the floor.  Push up by straightening your arms and stretching your abs and extending your lower back.  Your torso and legs ideally should be off the floor when finished with the pose.

In the photo below, my hands are not low enough, as the forearms should be more perpendicular with the ground, like in the photo to the right that shows perfect form.

Benefits: Can help improve posture, strengthen the spine, arms, and wrists, while stretching the chest, shoulders, and abdomens.

Beginner Yoga Pose #3: Downward Facing Dog

Yoga Pose Instructions

Come onto the floor on your hands and knees, which should be directly below your hips.   Hands should be slightly forward of your shoulders with palms spread and index fingers parallel or slightly turned out, and feet facing forward.  Lift your knees off the floor as you push your heels towards the floor.  This is one of the most basic poses, but it’s still not easy to master and complete with proper form!

Benefits: Can relieve stress, stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, and calves, while strengthening the arms and legs.

Kristin McGee is a celebrity Yoga Instructor based in NYC whose clients include Steve Martin, Tina Faye, Ben Stiller, and Bethany Frankel.  Kristin has appeared on CNN, FOX, the CBS Morning Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, The Tyra Banks Show, and the Isaac Mizrahi Show.  Her instruction is highly sought after because she delivers results and invites you to enjoy the journey.  To learn more about Kristin and check out here DVD’s, private classes, or sessions in NYC, visit her website at www.KristinMcGee.com.

* Helpful Yoga resource: www.yogajournal.com.


  • mary says:

    Great introduction to Yoga. Thank you for the visuals. They are very helpful.

  • Dr. Ken says:

    Mark - This is just inspirational - great stuff on form for health - I do yoga every morning along with Tai Chi/QiGong. Also do a shorter version of Tai Chi in the evening. It helps keep me flexible and competitive for tennis and racquetball. It also helps to bring me back in the "zone" to start and end my day.

    Keep the great work coming!

    Dr. Ken

    • Kristin Rooke, CPT says:

      Hi Dr. Ken,

      Thanks for sharing! We definitely believe that it's important to practice flexibility and mobility in some way every day. Whether you do yoga, tai chi, chi gong, or your own dynamic stretching routine, it's incredibly valuable to incorporate mobility into your workout program. Glad you enjoyed the article.

      -Kristin, BuiltLean Coach & Managing Editor