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Hosts discuss injury management for yoga. Learn about injury prevention and healing. Check out the full episode on Yogaland’s station page.
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Well, here we are. And today we're going to talk a little bit about injury management. We're gonna start with best practices, um, for injury management in vinyasa yoga, which is, like such a hot topic because we all get injured. We just all it's just having a body. I would say, Actually, these air best practices for in Austin a practice regardless of its of its vinyasa, yoga or not. And you know the reason that just like the reason that we had a few episodes in a row about sequencing is as I was developing content for my course, that's what's top of mind, right? So it's just kind of like for those of you that teach your, um, your practice is going to be fodder for your classes. What happens to you? What you go through in your own practice, you're going to use that as inspiration for your teaching and then same thing. Right now I am building. All of the content for probably will be four days, probably not three days online training on injury management and prevention. Um, this was a program that I've taught a few times in physical locations. I've taught in a bunch of different cities, and I was going to teach it this year in Chicago and had to cancel it because of Cove it. But the upside is, do it online. Andi, I'm writing just like I did for the sequencing. I'm creating a handbook. One of the things that I know from teaching for a long time online, you know, I've done so many online programs. Not just during Zoom is that online trainings actually need much more structure and much more reinforcement and much more corroboration than in person trainings, Right? So as I'm kind of going through all of this stuff and chapter rising and creating like all these short, digestible videos, um, I realized that before we start talking about, Oh, my knee hurts when I do pigeon or my hamstring attachments injured, or when I raise my right arm the top of my shoulders uncomfortable. What do I do before I get to any of that stuff we need kind of. We need thio ground ourselves and best practices, and in some ways, what I want to go through is total common sense, but we need to be reminded of common sensical things all the time, You know what I mean? Like, I was talking with my group the other day, and, um, just think about how many times in your life you need to be reminded. Like, hey, things are gonna be okay. My gosh. Right, Five seconds every five seconds, right. We kind of need that. Like your enough, you know? I mean, it's it's one of the reasons that, like, um, I don't mean it negatively, but like, simple platitudes or sometimes or cliches are still helpful because we need some some not just basic advice, but we need we need to be, um we need to have, like, our sensibilities positively reinforced. Yeah, and we constantly need to be reminded of the essentials of what is important. What is what are essentials are what is important. Yeah, eso the first thing that I want to bring up, right? Um and I say this right. I say this as a yoga teacher that I think for the for the most part has made my living on being a pretty detail oriented alignment teacher. But the first thing that I want to say in terms of big picture advice regarding injury management is It's not all about alignment. It's not all about alignment. Eso. I'm gonna continue on this, but this is the first thing. It's not about doing the pose. Quote unquote, right? Right. And I remember when I think his name is William Broad, right? Wrote that book that came out that was really sensationalist. I might have some decent points, but super sensationalist book about injuries and yoga sold a lot of copies, but it kind of it kind of created this fury in the yoga world for a period of time. And, um and I think, ah, lot of the things that I saw around that was Yeah, but if you're doing it right, if you're doing the poses right, you're not gonna hurt yourself. And here I am, like, I think a pretty good, technically oriented teacher saying, Actually, that's not necessarily true. It isn't actually just about the alignment. It's about something Mawr. Right? So these are the things that I think about it. It's kind of a combination of this when I'm thinking what is the best way to help minimize the potential of injuries? I think about these four or five things together. I think about a moderate pace, right? I think about skilful alignment. I think about the degree of intensity and the duration and the repetition of postures. We have to think about all of those things, right. And the reason that I say this is because without a doubt skillful alignment that suits the needs of one's body is going to help distribute stresses is gonna help offload access stress from vulnerable regions on gets going toe, minimize the potential for disruption. But if you do the right pose the right way too many times to intensely. If you stay too long and you don't do a complement of the opposite of those poses, you might just be on the road to a repetitive stress injury, right? So he was like that for me would be like triangle Totally. It's like I love triangle. It's a great pose for me. Um, in most ways, my body is really suited to triangle, except that I have a slight tendency toward sacroiliac instability. If I find myself just like if I'm in a two week period, just doing too many triangles and I'm just kind of like going a little too deep and I'm not really engaged enough where I personally need to be engaged with, just like my abductors. I will get a key. Yeah, but it's suppose that I love and oppose That is not bad. Quote unquote for my body. Totally. So the I think this this actually lands into another thing that I wasn't gonna talk about. But I'll bring up. But once in a while I will kind of pull back on, oppose, and I'll be like, You know what? I'm going to kind of hit pause on teaching this particular pose because I think it's really hard to reconcile for a population. But the reality is I don't think that the issue is so much the poses, it's how we do those poses and whether or not those poses ultimately suit our body, right? So yoga is for everybody, but not every poses for everybody. Not every poses for everybody at all phases of their life, right? And so again, it would be silly for me to be like Oh, no, Andrea, actually triangle pose. If you just did it the right way. And this was kind of I want This was kind of the narrative of I wouldn't say was, but is the narrative of can be of certain teachers and styles that just kind of like No, no, no, it's all if you do it, If you do it according to a B C D. E, then it's right, and into some degree that's correct. But But again, there's a bigger picture here, right or chattering will come up, or pigeon pose will come up or they'll all be these like, really like quick hits of like, Well, you shouldn't do this pose or you shouldn't do that pose. And again, I think I want to stay really brought here and just say, Look, as a community of teachers and a community of practitioners, let's step back. And let's not answer difficult questions too quickly. Let's say that there are a couple of primary factors when it comes to minimizing injuries. Alignment is one of those but degree of repetition, intensity of duration, duration, like how long you stay in the pose on, but also the pace with which you do it like are you actually moving at a pace that you can pay attention to the signals that are present, you know, And if you're Sometimes if you're moving too quickly, you just you're not able to actually get some of the signals that your body has given you, especially in a hot room. So this is something like that I hold myself extremely accountable to, because I will, prior to Cove it and after co vid willing. Hopefully we'll teach vinyasa practice in a warm room again, right? And I have to know like that feels really great and it's really wonderful, especially if you're particularly skilful and already really healthy. But if we go a little too quick in that room, especially once you're warm and you have certain repetitive stress or tendon apathy, um, you might not notice that you're getting certain irritations. It might feel lovely then, but then, you know, a couple of hours after class, maybe you realize that you know you re triggered a certain ongoing injury because we were moving at a pace and we had a temperature and intensity where you couldn't quite read it. 10 Ganapathy. It's a broad category for irritation of attendance, so it's a pathology of attendant, and there's a bunch of different types of it or some categories. But the point here is like we can't just think is about alignment. We can't just think, Oh, it's this pose or that pose. We have to really step back and look at these broad characteristics, right? And just be as sober minded and reasonable as we can and avoid magical thinking at all costs or like extremist thinking, thinking like, Well, it has to be done this way and has to be done under these conditions because even if those air true and skillful conditions they're not, they're not gonna work for everyone all the time. It's somewhat fundamentalist, right to think like that. You're like as a teacher, you're going to teach someone the absolute fundamental right way to do it, and then therefore they will not get in.
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