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Announcement: Artis Ābols joins NEXT Hockey camp!

Artis Ābols

We are happy to announce that Artis Ābols will share his experience in our NEXT Hockey camp!

Artis Ābols (born on January 3, 1973 in Riga) is a former Latvian ice hockey player, played as a foward, for many year Artis was one of the leaders in Latvian national team. In 2017, he was the head coach of the KHL club Tolyatti “Lada”. Last season as a head coach’s assistent for Riga Dinamo. As a father Artis raised in hockey his son Rodrigo, who this season signed a contract with the NHL team Florida Panthers.

Announcement: Raimonds Vilkoits is now headcoach and camp leader!

MAY 18, 2020

Raimonds Vilkoits

Raimonds Vilkoits officialy joins the NEXT Hockey intense practice week as a head coach, leader and will be cooperating with Ted Suihkonen!

Raimonds Vilkoits is a former Latvian Ice hockey player, centre. 2010. Raimonds played in KHL for Rigas Dinamo. This season he is a head coach for HK Rīga in Russian Junior League (MHL) and in his debut team played one of the best seasons in the club history.

Bikram Yoga joining us in NEXT Hockey Camp!

Believe it or not, your favorite hockey player might practice yoga.

Lars Eller, Brandon Prust, Colby Armstrong, instructor Alain Robin, Carey Price, Travis Moen (Photo by Bikram Yoga DIX30)

Bikram Yoga is a session of 90 minutes at 40 °C and 40-50% level of humidity in which 26 postures (asanas) and two breathing exercises (pranayama) are practiced. This series of postures combines abilities of concentration, patience, determination and self-control, which lead to increase clarity, increase self-confidence and vitality.

A systematic review in 2015 found that Bikram Yoga improved lower body strength, range of joint motion in both upper and lower body, and balance. It noted that unsystematic trials (without randomized controls) had found possible improvements in glucose tolerance, bone density, blood lipids, artery stiffness, mindfulness, and “perceived stress”. It recommended that future research should follow guidelines to provide reliable results.

During his career, retired NHL forward Georges Laraque kept his 6-foot, 243-pound frame limber by adhering to a strict training regime that included yoga. “I’m strong, but not because I bench-press six plates,” he says. “If you do yoga, you don’t need to do weights that much because it’s like a weight exercise, but instead of using weights, you’re using your body.

“When you work on your flexibility it makes you less prone to injuries,” he explains, adding that he believes yoga “is really something that will help young athletes get stronger and improve their core. It can help them become better athletes.”

In addition to the physical benefits, Laraque also enjoys the meditative aspect of the practice. “The game can be stressful on your body and on you mentally,” he says. “You go there and it’s just really relaxing. It’s really quiet and it’s hard to explain but you don’t think of any problems or anything else. It’s so good and relaxing and purifying.”

Challenging the misconception that yoga is “more effeminate” than other forms of exercise, future San Jose Sharks Joe Thornton likes doing “Bikram Yoga, just to kind of sweat out.”

“Yoga isn’t just about the body, it’s also about the mind, and it’s a technique that has really helped me,” says the NBA All-Star LeBron James.  “I had some lower-back problems a few years ago and once I started to do the yoga, it has helped them go away for now.”

Rarely getting more than five minutes of rest per game during his career as a basketball player, James recently credited yoga as the catalyst for his incredible stamina. “Does it work for everybody? I don’t know. But it works for me,” said James.