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'Generally Broken' - how yoga helps

Every time you book a class I ask if there are any injuries I need to know about, this is an opportunity for me to make sure that I can tailor the class to you, offering modifications or variations to help you flow with more ease.

My favourite response to this question last year was the reply "generally broken", this response really resonated with me. While chatting with my parents recently instead of listing the parts of me that were broken I found it quicker to list those that were functioning well. At that point I think it was my left ankle, right ankle and right hip that were ok, which says a lot for what was going on with the rest of my body! It was quite soon after crashing off my bike so that was responsible for most of the issues and I am pleased to say that today I'm much better and am confident that everything is moving in the right direction.

I heard recently that you should treat your body like it is going to carry you for a hundred years, I wish I could go back and tell my younger self this. I am not entirely confident she would have listened. I feel like the twenty year old me thought that fifty years let alone a hundred years were way beyond where I would end up, attacking everything with little thought to the consequences for an older me. I loved anything that gave me an adrenaline rush, pushed my body repeatedly whilst believing I was invincible and would always bounce back stronger. For a long time I was lucky not to get injured and the few times I did hurt myself I came back quickly with little ongoing impact.

Fast forward to my late thirties, doing ski seasons and suddenly injuries seemed to take their toll. Slowly over the next ten years I realised that I needed patience and perseverance to rehabilitate successfully. I learnt this lesson the hard way, after tearing my anterior cruciate ligament during a freestyle ski session and then trying to rehabilitate it in just six weeks because I was booked onto a ski instructor course. As you can imagine this didn't end up going well, two weeks of intensive training resulted in me tearing the meniscus in the other knee.

Dealing with my knee injuries over the course of an intense couple of years of physiotherapy and surgery was when I really started to find yoga helpful. It gave me the opportunity to slow down and be in the present moment. The breathing techniques I learnt through yoga have helped me to manage pain, especially when it was difficult for me to sleep. My yoga practise has also helped improve the range of motion in my knee joints, although they may never return to what they once were. Yoga helps to keep them moving and allows me to enjoy those adrenaline fuelled sports I love, even if it is a little more sedately these days!


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