I have the back of a 70 year old???
I started teaching yoga in 2011 because I wanted to help other people like myself feel strong and confident in thier compromised bodies.
What do I mean by compromised bodies? Well I was recovering from back surgery and felt my body had betrayed me. At the age of 31 I was told I had the back of a 70 year old. Ahhhhh....what?
Fast forward 10 years; it's been quite a journey with highs and lows but I still love being a yoga teacher and just recently a yoga studio owner. What I love most is helping new students connect with their bodies. The truth is many of us are walking around in disconnect with our physical bodies, until pain occurs.
As a dear student of mine reminded...."Pain is a powerful motivator".
A few weeks ago, 10 years to the date of my back surgery actually; I woke up with severe back pain. I was unable to bend. I was literally crawling up and down my legs to do things. Sitting was awful and getting up from sitting was even more painful with pressure and pain shooting into my butt and down into my tail bone. This isn't just that kind of dull annoying pain, we are talking take your breath away; give me a minute to compose myself, bring me tears kind of pain.
F E A R
P A N I C
Am I going to experience the same thing that happened to my body in 2009.
The pain. The surgery. The recovery.
It turns out I have 2 more herniations above my surgery site, 1 of which is pressing on a nerve.. Very common for the lumbar spine. Once again I was reminded by the doctor,
"You have a bad back".
UGH. I knew this. But hearing it still hurt. Even more it was a trigger for me. It triggered all the feelings that I thought I had moved on from. The body doesn't forget. I fell apart. Mentally & emotionally.
Then I picked myself up, dusted my self off, and got back to figuring out what I needed to do.
My yoga studio has classes focused on Back Health. Am I a fraud? Or does this just make me super authentic? I don't know. What do YOU think?
So what am I doing for the back pain? Physical Therapy is helping me so I will continue with it. Lots of hip, glute, and core work. I do traction via suspension therapy and am very happy with the results. It's been less than 2 weeks since my diagnosis and while I am still in pain, I can bend again. Sitting is still ehhh. I don't feel pressure anymore, but get some nerve pain into my groin.
I still do yoga, for mobility and stretching. I am enjoying standing postures for strengthening. Exploring core work right now is interesting. If you take my class you will experience my excitement about new ways to engage.
So whatever your pain point; whether it be physical, mental, or a combination of both - you can ease the suffering it causes. It's part mindset, part education, and a BIG part of GRACE. Let yourself feel what you feel emotionally & pyschologically. They play a big part in our pain. But not for too long. Your body is more resilient and has the ability to heal. You just need to believe it.
At my studio - Align Yoga and Strength in Matawan, NJ we offer a beautiful blend of classes to ease your body and mind. Check out our schedule HERE.
If you are a beginner - come check out our Beginner Series. In the series we unpack the poses and concepts so that you can understand the why and how of particular postures or types of poses. With clear detailed instruction, and demonstration you will learn the basic foundation of a yoga practice. Together we will find different variations of poses that might work better for you going forward; so that you can enter a class with more confidence in yourself and your ability to take part of a class without looking around at everyone and wondering am I doing this right and more importantly am I doing this safely.
Love & Light,