Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Stiff hamstrings

The out-breath releases what is superfluous and removes that what would otherwise become blocks to free flow of prana within.
B.K.S. Iyengar

When I mention to somebody:
-You should practice yoga, the most common answer I get is:
-I can´t do yoga, I am too stiff and have no flexibility.

Well shouldn´t that be a reason to start practicing then? The less you move, the stiffer you become.

If your first contact with yoga is from a high pace ashtanga class, you will perhaps drop out after one session. Lots of different asanas and staying in them just for a brief moment during a 90 minutes session. A great exercise and way of releasing toxins, but also many risks for a stiff body to get injuries. The faster we move, the quicker the muscles and nerves need to work.

When it comes to somebody quite stiff you need to begin doing yogaposes s-l-o-w-l-y. The longer you keep the pose (minimum 2 minutes), the better result you will notice in your flexibility. The key to success is using gravity. Letting the body do the work for you.

This effectiv forward bending pose is for stretching the hamstrings, calves and hips. At the same time strenghtening the knees and thighs. A pose that especially all athletes should put extra focus on. A pose you can practice wherever you are. The more regulary the better.

Get shoes you need to tie and take the opportunity to bend (not sit), cut your toe nails in this pose, dry your toes after showering, energy nap at work (calm the mind), before going to bed (relieve insomnia)...

There will always be time when you prioritize.

Stand hip wide.
Ground your feet on the mat/floor/grass...
Bend the knees.
Fold forward.
Grab your opposite elbow.
Relax your neck.

Inhale and exhale through the nose with the mouth closed.

P.S These pictures are taken by my 6 year old daughter!

No comments:

Post a Comment