Yoga and the Pugilistic Offensive Warrior Tactics

Yoga and Mixed Martial Art might seem like uneasy bedfellows, but the combination of these two, almost polar opposite arts is being used to help army veterans adjust to civilian life post deployment in a program called Pugilistic Offensive Warrior Tactics or P.O.W for short.

It is interesting to see how yoga and martial arts are being used as a form of group therapy here, and the mission of the P.O.W program is to

directly addresses common but potentially devastating service-related challenges including the need for stimulus, structure and peer support as well as relief from social anxiety, isolation and many symptoms of PTSD

One of the toughest martial arts (and the art that kicked off the often brutal Ultimate Fighting Competition), Brazillian Jiu Jitsu, has a rich history with yoga. Many BJJ players these days supplement their grappling training with yoga to help with flexibility and general body awareness and strength. The legendary Rickson Gracie can be seen doing yoga in the documentary Choke that profiled his Vale Tudo title defense in Japan.

Listening to some of the guys on the video, it’s fantastic to hear them talking about yoga and how they’ve been taking it back into their daily lives

the biggest gift that yoga has given me is being able to focus on right now and not be hung up on the past and not be stressed out about the future