Turi

Listening To Your Body

6 posts in this topic

I have had a rather frustrating week yogawise... Initially I have had shoulder pain, that has inhibited my practice. Then on Wednesday I had a sudden lower back pain  that persisted for days. The kind where all mobility disappears and every movement looks like C3PO moving one joint at a time.   :1:

The shoulder issues are probably related to over doing it in chaturangas. The low back is probably due to my eagerness to see progression in my chosen pose for the challenge; reverse tabletop. Though practising regularly I hadn´t specifically practised that pose so much, so I did Wednesday morning after my regular morning stretcing, which proved to be not enough of a warm up! 

So now I am doing what I can, which involves nothing that requires any kind of shoulder strength, no standing balances because of the back and therefore no actual training the poses for the challenge.  :(

 

This is all a long introduction to my point: It is all about listening to your body. And to me that is the hardest part of yoga! I try to listen, but I think I may not quite understand the language of my body  :blink: It´s not like I know, when I overdo it, I will think that I am attentive to the signals from my body during practise and then in the following hours or days it will be clear that I overheard something. 

 

Any good ideas for improving this part of the practise? Any one else finding it hard to decipher your body´s reactions?

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That's my problem, too. This week I had to stop my practice for three days, I stressed my upper back, but it revealed only a few hours later.

I'll try to use more caution on all poses and movements that I consider my weak points, even if they may seem confortable while practicing at a specific moment.

Turi and YogaByCandace like this

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This is so hard to do, especially when, as both of you pointed out, the pain doesn't reveal itself until later.

 

I suspect mixing up the type of yoga classes each day can help.  It's confusing because that can sometimes undermine progress pace.  I heard that Bikram and Ashtanga classes are popular because when repeating the same sequence, students gain progress more rapidly.  However, I think it can also tire out or overstretch the same muscles.  This  me by how many different styles everyone practices and inspires me to check out restorative or yin classes.

 

It took me awhile to open up to the idea of trying other styles, and I think I needed to gain more self-awareness about my body before I could start listening to my body. When I first started, I only pursued vinyasa flow classes because I couldn't focus my attention to appreciate holding poses for longer. A few months ago, I went to a class that didn't spend too much time stretching and dove into crazy plank poses and side planks. It was fun for the challenge aspect, but then my wrists were shot. I had to take a break for 2 weeks and when I got back, I did forearm modifications for a week.  Now I am taking more hatha classes, where we stretch for the first 30 minutes of class, and the next hour I can focus on my alignment and engaging my muscles to go deeper into the pose because there is more time spent.

Turi, Mana, Laura and 1 other like this

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For me, my initial reaction to an injury is annoyance with my body, or worry that I'm getting older and blah blah blah. However, usually after the initial few minutes of annoyance or worry, I'm able to just flick a switch and take the thinking to a space where I can look for the silver lining. What is the lesson? If it's a wrist injury when I've been practicing too many arm balances, I think, "Ok, I need to back off and let the yoga practice work rather than get myself to work the practice" - does that make sense? Or sometimes I think that whenever there's an injury from over practicing that it's a sign I need to get back to a more gentle foundation and basics practice. It's a good lesson in staying patient.  :)

Turi, Laura, Mana and 2 others like this

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 Or sometimes I think that whenever there's an injury from over practicing that it's a sign I need to get back to a more gentle foundation and basics practice. It's a good lesson in staying patient.  :)

 

 

I totally agree with this point. Whenever I overdo my body just reacts with some kind of back, neck or shoulder  pain. The only thing is that I get the sign after several days of practice and I have to go with a more gente practice for the following days........ for me is hard to decipher my body's signals too :5:

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It is nice to hear that others are familiar with this issue too. And you all make good points about varying the practise, practising patience and letting the yoga work instead of the body.  :0:

I have tried those things and I do feel a difference. I reach for that point at the end of the comfortzone and when I think I am there I back up just a bit - because I think that´s where my actual point of progression is. So maybe I am in the process of learning to listen to my body  :)

yogafire and nfenchak like this

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