Finding the Yoga for You

Finding the Yoga for You

February 2013 FITTIMES Newsletter

Patients often ask how to choose a Yoga class where they can safely and effectively practice Yoga with respect for their injuries. I recommend that my patients consider their past Yoga experience, be patient with themselves and most importantly, listen to their bodies. Part of the practice of Yoga is learning how to express the pose in a way that benefits your body and using your injury as a focal point to listen to your body can help you do just that. Most people in a Yoga class are working with an injury. Don’t be afraid to modify. You may be surprised by who chooses to join you.

Take time to get to know your practice. People frequently tell me that they “are not good at Yoga” so they choose not to participate. Typically, this suggests that the person feels stiff or has difficulty with balance. Yoga takes time to get to know how to move in the poses that works with your body. Give new sequences and poses a chance, but temper your expectations of yourself. 

Here are some additional tips to find and follow a Yoga class 
that is right for you:

  • Allow yourself time to learn how to take the class in an optimal way for the way that you are organized.
  • Take a class where you are not bored or overwhelmed.
  • Look for a teacher who gives verbal and tactile feedback in a way that is safe and helpful for you.
  • Consider the ratio of verbal instruction to silence.
  • Choose a class where you are able to participate but also have the opportunity to take some quiet time for yourself. 
  • Look for a class that makes sense to you. Yoga classes do not need to make logical sense to you, but they should make sense to your body. Another way to think about this is to consider a meal you like to eat. You may not know the intricacies of how the meal was prepared, but you do recognize it feels good to eat, it gives you energy and it doesn’t weigh you down. Even if you are new to Yoga, consider the experience within the context of your preferences to determine if it is a nourishing movement practice for you.

Having osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, or impaired balanced makes it difficult for some people to safely practice Yoga. I am excited about starting a Yoga class for older adults and people working with injuries. I am drawn to working with older adults because I love making Yoga accessible to people who have a complicated medical history. Yoga has many therapeutic benefits when it is practiced appropriately and with care. I am looking forward to sharing Yoga with older adults and people with injuries in the CCPT community! 

Century City Physical Therapy is excited to begin a Senior’s Yoga class taught by Juliana, who is a Doctor of Physical Therapy and certified Yoga teacher. Yoga is a great way to improve flexibility, develop balance strategies and safely build bone density. This course will introduce the fundamentals of Yoga and incorporate moving with stillness and balance poses. People who are new to Yoga and those recovering from injuries will also feel welcome. We look forward to seeing you there! 

Yoga for Seniors
A 6 week series starting February 27th, Wednesdays 1-2 pm, space is limited, call for questions and to make a reservation, bring a mat and wear comfortable clothing