Monday, April 04, 2011

Experience with injuries

Interesting experience: In last posts I wrote about my overstretched legs. I travelled to my parents and made a break of three days. Secretly I hoped my legs would be better afterwards. Yesterday I went to a led class and it was worse again. The conclusion. It would have been better to practice modestly and with care than not to practice at all.

Ashtanga yoga is for every day.

In my opinion are injuries more likely after years of practicing. In the first years I avoided the edges, my limits. Unconsciously of course. I didn't know the correct technique. When I couldn't reach my toe with my hand, I bended the knee i.e., to overstretch the leg is impossible that way, but this pose also won't do much, flexibility won't improve. The limits are neither really felt nor pushed. I surely also bowed the back.
Nowadays I engage my muscles, the leg is stretched when I bend forward. And I try to keep the back straight. That way my muscles on the back side of the legs get stretched.

Despite this pain in the legs, I did rather well yesterday in the led class. To practice in a group gives energy.

I don't know when it happened that I overstretched my legs, but I think it was when I practiced sanumasana, side split at home. I pushed too hard.

Poses develop slowly. One has to be patient.

To relax the leg muscles I took a bath yesterday and I massaged my muscles with rubbing alcohol. I will take a magnesium or two as well.

Good news: urdhva dhanurasana is more and more a joy. I think it will take another year till I'll be able to come up from this pose. It's OK. To have fun practicing it seems to be progress.

Mysore class this moring for me, I'm looking forward to it.

Picture: A hen. What a beautiful animal.


denise said...

I hope you leg heal very soon, and I think you are right when you say that keep practicing still the best way to heal (not to hard of course).
I love hens too, I have 4 !

Ursula said...

Wow, you have 4 hens. How nice is that.

Me too, I hope very much that I'm painfree. I practice very slow for the time being. Second series is better than first.

Artists Valentine said...

I hurt my shoulder (shoveling? imprecise chauturanga alignment?) and it wasn't muscle, it was a rotator cuff ligament that I tore. If you've pulled/torn ligaments rather than muscles, it may take weeks rather than days to heal, and continuing to stretch could cause further injury. After a 3 week break from ashtanga (not giving up yoga completely), I was able to return to a modified/ knees down practice, and finally now after 2 months it's almost as good as new.
I read on the internet that working through the injury would do more damage than good, just something to consider. Good luck! I read your blog all the time.

Ursula said...

Thank you for your comment and thank you for reading my blog.

I give you right, it is important to know what causes the pain.

One reason why I'm such a fan of details and perfection of the poses is because I know that this can prevent injuries. Especially when a yogi/yogini practices daily, it is important how the knees are, how the shoulders are. Ashtangis emphasize the breath and the flow, but I personally think that performing the asans correctly is equally important.