Posted by on 7/6/2021 to Let's Talk Yoga!
Common Yoga Injuries and What We Can Do To Avoid Them
Yoga is a discipline that has seen tremendous success, particularly in recent years. This ancient tradition has reinvented itself for the Western world, spreading like wildfire throughout the world. Few people know, however, that there are a very high number of injuries and physical damages, even serious ones, that occur during the execution of these techniques.
In fact, it seems that many people get hurt and have injuries during Yoga. Experts say that this discipline must be practiced with a mindful approach it is therefore not a path to well-being, but an enrichment to an already positive situation!
Here is that Westerners who try their hand at the ancient technique end up getting hurt, especially in the back. This is followed by muscle trauma, falls, postures that are detrimental to one's body held for minutes or even hours.
Yoga thus proves to be a rather dangerous discipline, especially when placed in the hands of instructors unable to recognize behaviors that are negative for the health of those who practice it.
When we talk about yoga, we are talking about a complex discipline, absolutely not to be taken lightly and which requires very high knowledge, together with the awareness of one's body and its limits.
The main cause of the problems seems to be the spread of yoga in a "recreational" form, such as that encouraged by gyms, which often puts these techniques in the hands of unqualified people, instructors who end up treating a millenary tradition as if it were Zumba Fitness, ignoring the possible damages and the true nature of the techniques used.
Yoga should bring well-being and health, but it seems that things do not always go as they should, and a relaxing session could turn into the cause of much greater damage, than perhaps those pains we thought we would heal.
The reason behind common yoga injuries
Lack of progression
A frequent cause of injury in any business, you want to get results right away without giving your body a chance to get there right.
It takes time and perseverance for your body to be ready to assume certain positions, to skip the stages with willpower, it can make us achieve the result, but there is a price to pay.
Lack of warm up
Even if considered the most boring part of every workout, the warm-up has the function of raising the body temperature and therefore improving the elasticity characteristics of the tissues, decreasing the possibility of injuries. Seasonal temperature can also affect.
In classical yoga there is no warm-up, but perhaps it would be advisable before assuming particularly risky positions.
In spite of the enormous amount of information that declaims amazing benefits and tends to overlook the less glorious aspects, yoga is not the panacea for all ills.
But it is above all a practice linked to a spirituality and to a personal search (and this is perhaps the reason why it should be started).
Detached from the spiritual and moral side, it becomes an exercise like any other, whose pros and cons must be evaluated in each individual case.
The practice of yoga can have some benefits, provided that, like all things, it is done in the right dose and with common sense, and above all by turning to the right teacher.
Although an intense practice such as Ashtanga or Bikram can be pleasant and liberating, because you may sweat and release endorphins, do not push your body beyond the limits, without a progression, trying to achieve the perfect pose, hold your ego, stay in pleasure and listen to the body
How to avoid common yoga injuries
1. Leave the competition aside
One of the easiest ways to get hurt is to compare yourself to others and think that to get the best out of your practice you have to adhere to some pattern or a rigid pattern.
Don't look around to see what and how others are doing.
Get out of your head to become "good" at yoga, the purpose of yoga is not to become "good"
The purpose of doing yoga exercises is to feel good; gain vigor and psychophysical well-being; know and improve yourself; show potential and resources and for those interested also in the spiritual aspect, awaken the memory of their own divine essence.
3. Listen to your body ALWAYS
Easy to say less to do.
The mind tends to wander all the time, keeping it in mind about the practice that is being done also tests long-time practitioners.
And this too is part of a path, of a continuous training, which also becomes a discipline of the mind; essential for the higher stages of yoga (pratyahara; dharana; dhyana; samadhi).
Especially when you seem to master some particular exercise or position, the level of attention is lowered; and it is easy in this state to slip into a kind of automatism whereby even if you are practicing, the mind is elsewhere.
And sometimes it can take just a moment of distraction to hurt you.
3. Respect your limits
So: a moment before you feel bad stop, a moment before that tension becomes pain stop.
Leave room for inspiration and the desire to explore new possibilities, but respecting the limits that that moment allows you.
The first principle of yoga is ahimsa non-violence, start practicing it towards yourself while practicing.
I am not saying that you have to give in to your current limit of flexibility or strength, but through practice try to discover the difference between the discomfort that is needed to improve and the discomfort that anticipates getting hurt.
And since there is no point of arrival, enjoy every step without haste. In fact, rather than a practice, it would be more appropriate to speak of yoga as a process, which is one with the process and the rhythms of life and of the body that are in constant transformation.
Look for the correct alignment
Often some alignment precautions or the use of prop like a yoga block or a yoga strap are enough to practice obtaining the maximum benefits, in safety.
Even if you apply all of these things, it can still happen that you get hurt
and it should not be seen as a failure: it is not wrong to make a mistake and sometimes taking a step back is just what it takes to move forward.
If you get injured
Remember that a small muscle injury can take 2 to 3 weeks of rest.
A more important injury may require diagnostic tests and a visit to the orthopedist.
If you get injured, listen to your body and consult a specialist before resuming your practice.