The client I write about today, was an athlete and she came to me because she believes in her bodies capacity to heal without surgical intervention and I agree with her. Yoga therapy provides the tools and skills to not only resolve pain but to help avoid surgery, prolong the need to have surgery and support the recovery process should surgery be required.
The Athletes Story
I have a lovely client, let’s call her B. She grew up an elite athlete – she trained hard and found creative ways to use her body to create more strength and power. While there is nothing wrong in how she trained or lived, she now experiences knee pain and hip pain, which limits her quality of life and may require surgery. She is getting some gains from physiotherapy such as strength and balance and she continues to employ compensatory patterns to create her movement. While this is not a bad thing, because she is getting results, I suspect that it will only get her so far. The challenge she reports experiencing with yoga therapy, is that movements are smaller than she’s used to – she just wants to power through and DO. And she’s not used to feeling the sensations of her body. In some ways she said feels like she has to learn how to move all over again. Yes and No. Yoga therapy is not asking her to move – as in, go about her day moving in some weird foreign way, but what it is asking her is to slow down, pay attention to what her body feels like when it is moving in her practice. This is going to help expand her awareness of what is and isn’t working for her in her day to day. When we have more awareness of our relationship to our bodies, we have more possibilities and opportunities available to us. B is curious about movement and she’s a problem solver which makes her a great client and she’s going to get great results. Before it was, “power through and get it done” now it could be “if I take a break, I’ll have more energy later,” or “if I do it this way, I’m going to be in more/less pain later,” and “I know I feel really great after doing this exercise so I’m going to do it more often.”
There is more than one way to do something – and when you don’t know what the other options are, you are limited. When you have many ways of doing something, new possibilities arise at the same time. So we are going to keep working on shifting from cognitive centric movement to feeling focused movement to catapult her progress!
If you felt a little bit of excitement reading this, or your curiosity has been sparked, I’d love to have a conversation with you!