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Postural deviations

Mirjana2010-07-05 07:24:21 +0000 #1

does somebody who has scoliosis or any other postural deviations can ever really practise pranayama techniques where back should be erect?

Thank you!
Janet Carpenter2010-07-05 07:27:56 +0000 #2
I have prone-supine scoliosis, and have practiced yoga for over 30 years.

I have taught yoga for 20 years. My scoliosis, muscle spasms and compensation cramping have been a major motivation to consistently practice yoga !

Pranayam is even more important with scoliosis yoga. Follow the ABC:

Accept the body "as is."

Breathe into the physical restrictions of the scoliosis.

Create an intention for each breath to expose, embrace and release emotions

With this intention, allow yourslelf a safe breath-place to gently touch and then breathe away negative emotions like anger, resentment, shame, fear, self-pity and physical pain that block the body's natural tendency to heal itself.

If breath from lower belly to clavicle is not feasible, then breathe as fully as limitations allow. That is your definition and benchmark for a full breath.

Yoga is a practice of unifying mind, body and spirit. Breath or pranayam, is the primary vehicle for facilitating this unity. The perfection of the posture is secondary. That said, if it helps your quality of breath to sit in a supported posture, then do so. As long as the intention is set, you breathe into the restriction, and you are essentially loving/healing it with each breath.

With this practice, you have permission to experience few changes in your physical appearance. You will, however, create significant healing in your mind body spirit area. Mind body spirit healing and connection is what yoga is originally intended to be all about, so I hope that you will choose to celebrate your unique practice, as I do mine.

And you never know, your scoliosis may relax a bit. You will experience a more open heart as a result of your improved comfort level within yourself.

Svaroopa yoga is a style of yoga discipline that offers supported poses. It is a yummy treat to give yourself. You could look online to see if there are classes in svaroopa yoga being offered in your area.
Mirjana2010-07-05 08:00:39 +0000 #3
Dear Janet,

truly thank you for your reply. I'm also very motivated to practise and live yoga for the life time. That are maybe a big words for a year of practising but that's how I feel. I'm awared of my back "speciallities" only sinds practising asanas. Before I didn't even realise. I'm following also a teachers program. I'm not so much focused on becoming a teacher because that's too far away but I find study itself really interesting and inspiring. I'm actually not practising pranayama yet I feel it is too soon and I see no reason to be in a hurry. But I was wondering...

I've saved your letter to read it occasionally. It is a beautiful letter.

Warmly greetings,

Janet Carpenter2010-07-05 07:53:46 +0000 #4
Yogic breathing is pranayama.

Yogic posture is asana.

You are already practicing pranayama when you practice asana.

Some yoga disciplines practice sitting pranayama prior to practicing asana.

This tends to refine a yoga practice toward peace, sweetness and calm awareness. But anyway,

Here's something to try on your own:

When you practice at home and in class, allow your attention to rest on how you breathe with each movement of your asana. Really imagine your breath "going into" the part of your body that is talking to you with each pose.

You could telephone interview yoga teachers in your area about how they bring yogic breathing into their classes. Or, you could ask your current teacher to detail breathing with postures.

I am glad to hear that your scoliosis is not so severe that you even noticed it prior to practicing yoga.

Your interest in pranayama means that your practice is growing beyond its old boundaries. Keep up the good work !
Mukunda2010-07-05 08:41:35 +0000 #5
Nice line of sharing.

There are specific recommendations that i share with individuals for each person is unique in their process with curvature. I have found that curvatures in excess of up to low 40 degrees can be reversed by up to 50% by doing sadhana with my guidance for 2 years. The steps are 3 in nature

1 - assess for weak muscles and discover what range of motion is limited - then develop a program to make the weakness as strong as possible.

The practices must be personalized to the individual. This takes about 6 months.

2 - once the musculature is make as strong as possible that strength is used to open the spinal curvatures and shift the spine. Along with this phase also comes much emotional release work - a process i developed called Yoga Bodywork. this takes another 6 months.

3 - stabilize the changes for next year. integrate the yoga more diligently into your lifestyle.

This is detailed on papers graduates have written for certification as Structural Yoga Therapists see : : Welcome:

then SYT Papers.

namaste mukunda
Mirjana2010-07-05 07:53:54 +0000 #6
Dear Mukunda and Shanti,

I feel that my body and my muscles are stronger than a year ago. I'm practising by myself every morning plus two or three times with my teacher in a class. My scoliosis was never officially diagnosed so I don't know how many degrees is my curvate. But every morning before I start practising poses I do a passive stretching of my back on the rol (trying to get stick with the ground and with the hands streched over the head). This "session" is becoming longer and longer. Vertebra per vertebra. And I feel clearly at the point where the false ribs are attached that the curve goes pretty much to my right. Thanks to Shanti I started to give a much bigger stress to relax with a deep breathing than streching. Than I gently massage with a slow waving the part that lies on the rol (helping myself also with the hands) and I visualize how the organs are relaxing and sink to the ground. My teacher explained me that also the joints between organs influence the whole structure. Just today I had very intense experience. The whole session lasted one and a half hour. Normally I continue with asanas but today I lied in savasana. I had a feeling that a lot of emotions and pain was released. I don't know where I collected all that stuff I started to read the book Eastern body Western mind. I'm curious how my shape of the spine influence the energy flow?

Hopefully my description is not to clumsy?

Friendly greetings
Hubert2010-07-05 10:24:34 +0000 #7
I noticed some of you are talking about embracing and releasing emotions.

Does it include negative ones too ?

Should I try embracing my negative emotions like anger, jealousy, and sadness ? Because I usually try to repress those.



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