If you’re passing by the arena and you happen to see an intimidating, bald-headed 7-footer making swan-like movements, don’t be alarmed. It’s just Suns center Marcin Gortat partaking in some yoga.
The Suns center first jumped aboard the yoga bandwagon when he was playing in Orlando. Due to his practice, flexibility, which once was a weakness, has now become a strength for Gortat.
“Yoga helps me stretch my body out,” the Suns big man said. “It’s also improved my core and my flexibility.”
Gortat usually practices yoga about once a week. In Orlando, his teacher would either come by the gym or right over to his house.
The practice was encouraged by the Magic’s training staff, who believed in its ability to help with injury prevention. Thus far, yoga has been effective in that department for the Suns center.
And after getting such a positive feeling from the workout, the “Polish Hammer” kept returning for more.
“It helps me open up my hips, which is the biggest problem with my body,” he said. “They’re looser, still not great, but they’re getting better. My lateral movement is better.”
His favorite positions include the warrior poses and the sun salutation series. Although, he subscribes to the practice, he realizes it’s a little unconventional for an NBA player.
“When you get the random people watching you from the side, they say, ‘What’s wrong with this guy?’” he lightheartedly said about bystanders seeing a seven-footer in a variety of contorted positions.
But in the end, Gortat says you can’t argue with the results.
“I’m pretty flexible for a seven-foot guy,” he protested. “I’ll say that the biggest improvement was in my Achilles. I’m able to do a squat without picking my heels off the ground.”
His agility for a big fella was already pretty impressive. After the interview, he stated that if he was all alone on a fast break this year, he would put the ball through his legs and dunk it.
Check out this video of him performing that dunk, which he said was easy for him. Maybe a few more upward dog poses from and now he’ll be able to do that over a car or something.