By Narendra Maheshri
Why should we be concerned with safety tips? Yoga is good for the body. There are many aspects of practice, but posture (asana) is most commonly learned first in modern classes. Additionally, asana practice is also good for one’s emotional, psychological and spiritual well-being. You can take yoga with you anywhere you go and roll it out like a yoga mat. It will contribute to giving you abundant energy and healthy sleep cycles.
Even so, it is possible to either cause an injury or aggravate an existing injury if not mindful during the yoga practice. Here are four more helpful yoga posture safety tips to add to the previous tips on this blog.
Four Yoga Posture Safety Guidelines
1. Bring your own yoga mat to yoga class. Some new students will attempt to do yoga on either the bare floor or perhaps use the very thick workout mats often found in gyms. Both of these choices pose problems for a full, enjoyable and safe yoga practice. Feet will slip on floor and thick mats alike. Balancing poses become especially challenging and frustrating on thick mats. A yoga mat is perfect for yoga!
Another factor that suggests the wisdom of having your own yoga mat is that studies have shown that shared yoga mats are not sanitary. If using a shared mat, consider covering it with a towel.
2. When beginning yoga, or when caring for spinal, neck and back injuries, avoid poses such as the plow, shoulder stands and headstands. These poses can cause excessive strain on vertebral disks and joints. The goal of yoga is to strengthen the body, its joints and the spine, and also to heal injuries, not to create injuries.
3. Knees – Part 1: For knee support in standing yoga postures, be sure that knees are protected by never locking them. Locked knees put the weight of the body upon the knee joint, and the objective in yoga is to have the muscles do their job and hold up the body. Unlocking the knees has two benefits, the knees are safer, while at the same time the muscles are working and getting stronger. This is even truer when doing standing balancing poses, with the entire body’s weight upon one leg. That weight definitely needs not to be on one locked knee.
4. Knees – Part 2: Knees require careful consideration in kneeling or cross-legged postures as well. If there is any strain, pain or tension, do not force the pose. Move the legs so the knees do not feel the strain. Also, a cushion, blanket or rolled up mat can be placed under the knees for support.
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