Have you experienced a shooting pain in the writs while doing a Santolanasana or a jerk in the ankle while doing Downward dog? Despite being a favorite low impact exercise option, yoga is also not devoid of injuries. As with the benefits, there are certain snags associated with this beautiful fitness regimen, that quite often arise from the carelessness and overzealousness of the practitioner. Here are some interesting and useful tips you can always keep in mind to thwart off these injuries at a yoga class.
10 Fail Proof Tips To Prevent Yoga Related Injuries
1. Warm up is a must
Each yoga asana requires a warm up. Along with preparing your body to hold the asanas, it is very important to ensure adequate lubrication of the joints and an enhanced flow of blood. Warm up helps you with these processes. It is, in fact, a kind of coherent approach to get into the flow. That is why you do a Bhujangasana or even a mild Dhanurasana before getting into Sarvangasana.
2. Align, align, and align
Yoga is all about alignment. Get it right. Once you know the alignment right, then you will be able to shield yourself from the otherwise susceptible injuries. Along with easing the stress the muscles experience while holding a pose, proper alignment will help you deepen yourself. A matter of fact – if you get the alignment right, then you get the benefits of the pose.
3. Do not compete
You are not here to compete, neither with other practitioners or with yourself. Remember the key rule – your body reacts differently each day. You might be able to get into Sarvangasana one day; but that doesn’t mean will be able to do with the same ease another day. So, take it as it comes. If you are newbie to yoga, then try building your stamina before attempting to hold a pose longer.
4. Your body is your guide
Listen to it! It will lead you the way. Never push yourself beyond the signals your body gives you. It is perfectly fine if you are not able to place your palms on the floor while doing Uttanasana. You can hold your ankles. If you have a knee injury, then do not worsen the condition by trying to touch the ground without bending the knees softly. You will be able to do that one day!
5. Set SMART goals
Ensure that your goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time bound. You have to give yourself sufficient amount of time to achieve your goals. Unrealistic expectations would force you to cross your limits, in turn leading to injuries.
6. Breathe right throughout the practice
Breathing right is the keyword. Every asana has its own style of breathing. Follow the instructions very carefully to thwart of injuries that arise from breathing such as sprains in the shoulders and abdominal cramps.
7. Stop if you are in pain
You can avoid doing a particular pose if it is hurting you. If you have a previous medical history such as a shoulder or knee injury, it is perfectly fine if you do not do a particular asana. Inform the instructor. Learn to say a no.
8. Use props, if necessary
Props are widely used these days in yoga. You can take the help of bolsters, blocks, cushions, straps, towels, and blankets to prevent injuries. Along with helping your achieve the right alignment, they will render additional support that will help you get deeper into the pose. Thus, using props will ensure that you are getting benefits.
9. Keep water and towel handy
You can keep a bottle of water and a clean towel near your mat. Take a sip if you feel you are getting dehydrated. The slightest dehydration might cause dizziness, leaving you fainted while in a pose. Wipe off those sweat beads to avoid tripping on them and falling down and getting injured.
10. Do the homework
The popularity of yoga is skyrocketing at an unimaginably fast pace. However, does that really mean you should also do yoga? Just do your homework. Know about yoga. There are countless materials available on the Web these days. Zero on a trained yogi or yogini, especially if your are from the Western countries. Or, you can count on one of those yoga studios where there are trained professionals. Check with you doctor to rule out health conditions. Last, but not the least, choose a yoga form that fits into your requirements.
These are some of the vital tips every yoga practitioner ought to remember. Keep them in your mind and enjoy a wonderful yoga journey!