24 Jun Your Guide On How To Avoid Yoga Injuries
A lot of us come out of our yoga practice not only feeling more relaxed and grounded but also sometimes with lower back pain or a hamstring strain. But isn’t yoga supposed to be good for you and not injure you along the way?
It most definitely is good for you, just taking into account that the yoga asana practice is not a generic one pose for all approach. Think about it; not one of our bodies is the same. We’ve all had a different day, so what may look super easy on your neighbour’s mat, might not be the right pose for you today. Yoga is for everyBODY, so don’t stress out when you just can’t nail that dancer’s pose one day. Chaturanga struggles, anyone? We’ve been there too!
We’ve rounded up 3 tips for you to stay safe in your yoga practice and avoid a yoga injury along the way.
1. Don’t Exceed Your Threshold
How do you know that you’ve gone too far in a pose? Remember that time inside plank when your bottom arm started shaking like a leaf, and you held your breath? That’s your body telling you you’ve gone too far in that moment. Let go of the ego and modify by dropping your knee to the mat. Sharp pain in a joint is always an alarm bell from your body to modify your pose, stat – never, ever in yoga should there be a sharp pain in a joint or basically anywhere in your body. You want a yoga practice for life, no?
Let’s be honest, we all have sneak peeked on the uber bendy yogi next to us while struggling ourselves to not toppling over headfirst in Ardha Chandrasana (Half Moon Pose). The struggle is real! Don’t worry, though; it’s only human. Nevertheless, keep in mind that yoga is really a personal practice. Yoga postures don’t really have alignment; people have alignment. If your alignment is correct, it might be incorrect for the yogi next to you. Some people also have restrictions in their joints and muscles. Others might have mental and emotional restrictions. Sometimes you’ve had a very stressful day or are just darn tired. Don’t stress too much when you don’t look like your yogi neighbour. It’s your practice!
3. Stop Going To Classes That Are Too Advanced For You
We all lead busy lives trying to squeeze in our yoga practice whenever we can fit it in. We don’t really pay attention to the class level, just what time the class is at and if it’s your fav teacher. Tick tick and off we go to practice some yoga. #truthbomb Think back to when you came out of class, and your head was spinning – didn’t sign up for circus school, right? Only to realise a bit later that you just went to an advanced class. And yeah, no surprise that the flow was just a tiny bit too complicated for your current level. Bring your practice back to your level. No shame in that! Only then can you steadily and safely build your own practice, and over time you’ll be able to practice these more advanced poses and feel on top of the world afterwards. You got this!
Keep these basics in the back of your head during your yoga practice. It will give you a good indication when you have gone too far in a pose. Remember, yoga should never make you gripping onto your mat, nor should it make you shake uncontrollably. Your breath should flow freely all the time. Don’t be too hard on yourself, modify your practice to suit your level and your body on that day. Build up your strength to take it up a level next time you are on your mat. And don’t stress you’ll nail your perfect pose soon enough. It might just take a little while longer than you wish for. Baby steps!
Building your practice from the ground up is key for a safe and lifelong yoga asana practice.
At Yogaholics, we’ve got yoga classes for everyBODY, and empower everyone to practice a mix of the core class types, depending on what your bodies need right at this moment. So if you’re newer to yoga or want to refine your practice, join Level 1 foundation classes to gain a basic understanding of alignment and learn modifications for a safe, strong practice.
Why don’t you try out Duncan Peak’s Move with Nothing to Prove slow flow? Whether it’s your very 1st or 101st yoga class, Dunx encourages you to enjoy moving with nothing to prove. This class is a chance just to relax and be yourself.
Roll out your mat and listen to your bodies, yogis!
Written by Eddie Modestini