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I used to do lots of yoga, about 2 hours per day for 2 years.You could say that I was a big fan. Even the knee meniscus/anterior cruciate ligament damage and subsequent operation didn’t put me off. But my opinion has since changed.
One week ago I got this email from an old friend:
Would you be able to send me a link to a Beginners Yoga Routine?
I’d really like something thats 10/20mins longer and incorporates breathing explanation/direction.
This is what I wrote back:
Very nervous about yoga.
Some breathing exercises are great for everyone but apart from basic breathing I would give the yoga a serious miss. Yoga can give the idea of short-term benefit while contributing to long-term damage.
1. No stretching any muscles on the back of your body! (in general)
Only things you should stretch are iliacus/psoas on front of hips (watch out not to hyperextend back) and pectorals on chest (again watch out for LB (low back) posture). Maybe in some circumstances quadriceps, scalenes, traps and in very special circumstances calves. If gluts, piri or hamstrings are tight then get a foam roller.
2. No bending forwards! ever ever!
This guy tells you why.
Also an experiment has been done (Snook et al, 1998) where they convinced half the group to simply not-bend-forward for the first hour of the morning and within months these guys had much less pain! One simple instruction!
So…. what can you do? This is where the fun starts!
It’s quite likely that you can perform this pain free. If you can’t then probably yoga would hurt also.
Get a personal trainer to show you how to do it. Do it without weight or with very low weight at the beginning. Get him also to show you some kettlebell swings. Just always remember to keep your chest
If you want a good way to wake up and feel alive in the morning then switch the shower on to cold for for 5 minutes! That’s get you awake and also help with weightloss! (google brown adipose tissue)
Later I reconsidered…..