Helping Others Through Injury
A lot of people start their yoga journey because somehow they have experienced some form of injury in their life and were referred to go take yoga. The theory behind this is that in yoga, there is generally a lot more integration in the body and when practicing, you use muscles that you’re not used to using. Furthermore, in yoga you are constantly putting major pressure on your bones. Whether you’re in downward facing dog putting pressure on your arms and legs, in handstand putting pressure on arms, or tree pose putting pressure on your legs, there is a tonne of pressure in any given pose. This added pressure helps build up the strength of the bones and is very good for preventing osteoporosis or injury related to osteoporosis.
So when a doctor, massage therapist, physiotherapist, chiropractor, osteopath, etc. etc. recommend someone to try yoga, they are essentially coming to you for help. This student is placing their trust and hopes in you. They are coming from a place of injury and may have a limited range of motion or strength. It is your job as a teacher to help them not only to recover from their injury, but also to prevent any further injury. Hopefully, during their time with you, they learn how they injured themselves, how they can integrate to begin healing, and how to avoid doing the same thing in the future. The general population does not have the greatest awareness of what is going on in their own bodies, so the source of the injury is not always obvious. As a teacher, it is so important to help students to tap into their own feelings and sensations. When a student can finally feel what it is that is going on deep within their bodies, the message the teacher is sending has been received. Perhaps eventually the student stop coming to the teacher because he or she has healed and now knows what to do with their bodies. Perhaps the student heals and stays with you. Either way, just helping the student work through the injury or injuries is such an honour and is one of the MANY reasons that I LOVE teaching yoga!