Although the primary mission of yoga is balance (in both body and mind), it seriously challenges your strength and flexibility. “All the poses are easy if you simply pay attention and breathe,” says Tara Stiles, yoga instructor and founder of Strala Yoga Studio. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t a fair share of poses that put people—particularly men—to the test.
Stiles identifies five advanced yoga positions that every guy should strive to achieve. “These five will probably present a challenge for most guys because of tight hamstrings, shoulders, and backs,” she says. “These poses require and promote even balance in the body, so it’s especially great for guys to open and strengthen evenly.” If you’re a new entrant into the world of yoga, we advise you pick up a few classes before you try diving headfirst (literally) into these moves.