Yoga and Injury Recovery
The arrival of a new year is a time of hope, of promise, and for many – of resolutions. Hindsight is twenty twenty, as the saying goes, and on January 1st many awoke determined to turn over a new leaf. This will mean a renewed dedication to a healthy diet and often, the pledge to get more exercise!
But what if you’ve recently suffered an injury? If injured in a car accident or other traumatic event, your options for exercise may be limited.
What is Yoga (And is it For Me)?
Practiced by everyone from gurus to celebrities to soccer moms, yoga is more than just a trend. In a study entitled “Yoga in America” published by Yoga Journal, 36.7 million Americans were reported to practice yoga in 2016 alone – a huge increase from the 20 million who hit the mats in 2012!
The Magic of the Breath
Think yoga is only for the young, nimble, and thin? Think again! A 5,000 year-old body of knowledge, yoga is more than just “happy baby”, “downward dog”, and other contortions. An ancient Hindu practice, “yoga” is derived from the Sanskrit word “yuj”, which means “to unite or integrate.” The theory behind yoga posits that the unification of the mind and body, through the practice of physical exercises and stretches, will lead to greater health, happiness, and meaning. A variety of postures – synced with the breath – support this union.
When under stress, the body releases excess amounts of cortisol (the “stress hormone”), ensuring a perpetual “fight or flight” response. The problem? That fight may never come! Over time, excess cortisol may lead to a host of modern ailments, including high blood pressure, obesity, and chronic fatigue. By focusing on conscious control of the breath, yoga encourages a profound relaxation through the body, paving the way for the rejuvenation most of us sorely need!
Because yoga works with the mind and body, its benefits are two-fold! On edge? Yoga may be particularly beneficial for those suffering from the stress (and even PTSD) associated with a traumatic accident. And, if you’re recovering from a car accident or other injury, the strengthening and lengthening effects of yoga will only further support a speedy recovery. Its benefits may include:
– Reduced stress
– Lower blood pressure
– Decrease in anxiety
– Increase in general wellbeing
– Increase in flexibility
– Decrease in injury recovery time
– Increase in range of motion
– Increase in circulation
So whether you’re a dedicated yogi, or have just mastered your first sun salutation, there’s a place for you on the mat! If you’ve been injured in a car accident, yoga might be right up your alley. Reach out to PROS Miami today, and we’ll be happy to recommend one of many excellent yoga instructors as part of your individualized injury rehabilitation plan. We’ll begin the journey towards health together – one breath at a time.