In my blogs about yoga for back pain the emphasis is often on relaxation: releasing tightness and relaxing the body and the mind. However, even with back pain we need a bit more ‘oomph’ sometimes. Stimulating yoga poses include standing poses, back bends and dynamic flow sequences, but many of these could make your back pain worse. Try this feel-good yoga sequence if you want to feel energised in a way that is still gentle and caring enough if your back needs plenty of TLC.
If you have trouble falling asleep or if you wake up during the night with your mind in overdrive, I have just the right thing for you: an easy yoga bedtime routine! The idea is not only to release physical tensions, but also to calm the mind, so that falling asleep and staying asleep become easier. Beneficial for most kinds of back pain as well, the short session is designed with yoga poses and breathing techniques that can settle the nervous system.
When I was very young, someone told me that we can never “own” a person: no person is ever ours to have and to keep. At that tender age I was impressed, but understood it to be true: people move on, people change, age, die, … Yoga philosophy teaches us that we find inner freedom when we let go of attachments. Of course, understanding this does not make it any easier when the time comes to part with a beloved person. Loving without possessiveness, and thus freely letting go, is hard, very hard. My son is ‘leaving the nest’ and even though I considered myself prepared, and I have had to feel grief before, it hurts. Yoga practices have given me an array of tools to help me deal with grief. They can, as it were, hold me by the hand and bring me back to a sense of inner peace. Because I know we all have to deal with loss and grief sooner or later, I decided to share some of these practices with you today.
When you have back pain it is not easy to find the one sleeping position that will keep you comfortable for several hours. You may have been used to sleeping on your abdomen, only to find recently that this increases your lower back pain. Even when lying on your back or side, you wake up with pain at night and feel stiff in the morning. Back pain is difficult enough as it is, so if your sleep suffers as a result, you may feel even more miserable. This blog gives a few suggestions about what to do for your back before going to bed, and shows which sleeping position has been found most comfortable by other people with back or neck pain.