Erin

Yoga with a walking boot

8 posts in this topic

I have a stress fracture on my left foot (5th metatarsal) from going on a run in old sneakers (lesson learned: running is the worst!  ;) ) and I'm in a walking boot for at least 6 weeks. I've been in it for a couple weeks and tried to take a break from exercising but now I'm seriously feeling it. My hips, IT bands, back, etc. are all tight and I'm getting antsy! I really miss my power flow vinyasa classes, but I'm not sure what is ok and not ok to do on my foot. It is possible and/or worth doing flows in the boot? Are there things you think I could safely do without the boot? Down dog feels fine. My doctor basically said proceed with caution and don't do anything high-impact. Walking a lot bothers it but other than that I haven't really tried any exercises. 

 

I will of course play it safe and not take any advice here as medical recommendations, but was hoping for help brainstorming! In particular, hip flexors, glutes, and legs are very tight and crank, and I'm always up for core-strengthening and heart opening. I am not very good at coming up with flow ideas, so just looking for some inspiration  :)

YogaByCandace likes this

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A fellow student in my local class did yoga with her walking boot (broke a toe). She definitely stopped hops / jumps during vinyasa and maybe did three-legged modifications for a bit to avoid bearing weight on that foot.  She said she would only go to a teacher who knows her body well (she's seen our teacher for almost 5 years now).  

 

Actually, I just realized I have her e-mail, so, let me ask her for advice. I'll paste here if I get a response.

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Welcome to the site, unfortunately with an injury.

I would have thought your doctor would have explained this more to you but perhaps not. Fractured bones are generally immobilized and no weight bearing until they heal partially. If a person starts working a fracture it will not heal and likely get worse with complications. If you feel your doctor or medical service is not giving you advice try asking specific questions or find a different person to help you. 

 

Flow yoga is a lot of stress on the feet. I can't see that this would be allowed for this injury but ask your doctor. If a seated practice is ok then I am sure you can get plenty of help here.

 

These types of injuries can be very difficult for active people. But the better you take care of the injury now the quicker you get it over with.

Hoping you recover quickly.

YogaByCandace likes this

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Anahata made important points - I realize I have no idea how long it was before my fellow student started going to class. She probably waited to partially heal first, so I'll ask her how long she rested.

 

Also, a friend of ours thought he just sprained his wrist while snowboarding, and then, he played volleyball with it over the next week (pretty stupid).  It turned out being a fracture that needed surgery. So.. don't risk it!

YogaByCandace likes this

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Don't worry, I'm definitely being careful with it! I've been in a boot for about 3 weeks now (she said 4-6 weeks total), and have done nothing but walk as needed in daily life. When I got the boot, I asked my doctor about yoga and working out in general, and she said to avoid high impact or prolonged standing on it, but upper body, some lower body machines at the gym, and certain yoga poses could be fine (we didn't have a chance to get very detailed on the yoga). I have pretty cranky hips on a good day, so after 3 weeks of walking funnily and without my normal workout routine I'm really feeling it. Of course I could stop being lazy and just do static stretching but I'm just really craving some yoga movement :) . I was hoping for any flow ideas that involve a lot of time on back, stomach, and seated. Seated poses are generally really tough for me because of my tight hips and hamstrings, but that probably just means that I should do them more!

YogaByCandace likes this

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I have tried to think of a lively practice that doesn't involve stress on the feet. Unfortunately I can't come up with anything. I do know how difficult it is for someone that is very active to have that taken away for awhile.

 

I used to have a difficult time with some long-held poses. I could do these poses easily enough, I just got restless staying in the pose for very long, more than 5 breaths. Shoulder stand was one of those poses. One day I learned that deep strong breath may be the most important part of that pose. I soon as I started concentrating on that it helped me comfortably stay in the pose for much longer. Maybe that is something to try and help.

 

And hey, inversions don't put any stress on the foot. Just make sure you come down on the uninjured foot. Inversions are actually a really good thing to do. That elevates the foot to reduce swelling, increases blood flow to the foot which helps with healing.

 

Hopefully not too much longer before your doctor says it's ok to do more.

YogaByCandace likes this

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I would honestly avoid flow at this point because even if you're not hopping to the front of the mat etc, it's still a lot of stress on the one foot to maintain balance in warriors etc. Instead, I'd use the recovery time to work on things like core and restorative practices like this and this. While the latter two won't get your heart rate up much, it'll be nice to just keep things open and limber for when you're all healed up and ready to get back to your more physical practice.  :)

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Whomp whomp thanks for the advice everyone! I guess this is the universe's way of telling me to actually do all that deep, slow stretching that I mean to do  :) I did recently buy blocks, bolster, and blanket so time to put them to use!

mimisouth likes this

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