When Injury Requires You to Slow Down



A well respected and recent yoga instructor of mine wrote this article on insights from injury:  You can see the entire article here.


I think these are great insights for anyone going through surgery, recent injury, or just needing to slow down and that being ok.


   1.  Adjust your attitude.  While it's human to be disappointed and sad to be injured or ill, it's not helpful to let these emotions spiral out of control or to get stuck in negative self-talk, such as "poor me" and "it's not fair." Instead, I reminded myself how lucky I was that the injury wasn't worse and remembered to be grateful that my situation was temporary. 


      2. Find ways to do some sort of daily movement.  If only one part of your body is injured, find ways to move the rest.  For me, yoga proved infinitely flexible (pun intended) in allowing me to move my body without putting weight on my ankle.  I could do poses lying down, sitting in a chair, and on my hands-and-knees, with lots of restorative postures and breathing.  I even created some "kneeling yoga" sequences. 


    3.  Make adaptations that allow you to continue normal activities as much as safely possible.  I found that wearing a hiking boot on my other foot kept my hips level and weighted down that leg, making it easier to clomp around without creating pain in my back. 


     4.  Turn the challenge into a game.  This is where my FitBit came in handy, as I tried to take as few steps as possible each day during the initial phase of my  injury.  Before the sprain, I typically took about 10,000 steps a day.   In the two weeks after my injury I got down to about 3,500 steps a day--with my "best day" only 2,829 steps.  And I dropped from an average of 30 flights of stairs a day down to less than 10, with my best day just 2 flights--pretty good for someone who lives in a two-story house!


    5.  Let the experience be a lesson in compassion.   Driving a motorized cart around the grocery story was a novel experience and surprisingly complicated.  Sure, it's easy to vroom up to the refrigerator case.  But how do you maneuver the cart to open the door? And what about trying to get something off a high shelf?  While I could stand and reach, I felt humbled to know that others are not so lucky.


    5.  Treat yourself with kindness.  Respect rest as a critical part of healing.  Let the experience of injury or illness give you a renewed appreciation for that precious gift we all too often take for granted, good health.



Carol Krucoff, C-IAYT, E-RYT 500

Author, "Yoga Sparks, 108 Easy Practices for Stress Relief in a Minute or Less" 

Co-Author, with Kimberly Carson:  "Relax into Yoga for Seniors:  A Six-Week Program for Strength, Balance, Flexibility and Pain Relief" 



Lisa Davidson teaches Kripalu Yoga in the Boston Metrowest area.  Carol Krucoff teaches in North Carolina, at the Kripalu Center, and around the country.  If you want some guidance in movement during your recovery, set up an appointment for private yoga with Lisa at Longfellow Health Center in Wayland 508 358-4900.


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