A Strain on Your Muscles

Paloma Chavez

Back PainSometimes, a simple stretch or twist can become a strain if it’s not done properly and with guidance. If you are not self-aware of your limitations and don’t have reasonable goals for your yoga practice, you can easily become vulnerable to unnecessary injuries.

We often forget that we can injure ourselves even from a practice that promotes balance and focus. According to a 2006 report from the Consumer Product Safety Commission, an astounding 4,500 people found themselves in the emergency room being treated for yoga injuries. And this number had increased significantly from a previous report conducted in 2004.

Dr. Benjamin Shaffer, an orthopedic surgeon, observes that “Most of the injuries we see are overuse, soft tissue injuries that affect the low back, the neck, groin strains, problems that have to do with overstretching.”

What’s the solution? Well, there are several ways to minimize risk of injury – always work with experienced teachers; don’t try to compete with a more advanced student; and – most importantly – listen to your body. As Kimberly Wilson, founder of Tranquil Space yoga studio, says, “If a pose doesn’t feel right to you, then stop. Yoga should cause sensation, not pain”.

So the next time you go into a pose or stretch, remember to listen to your body and be aware of its capabilities and limitations.

[tags]minimize injury, doing yoga properly, yoga injuries, body limitations[/tags]

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