”Yoga teaches us to cure what need not be endured and endure what cannot be cured” — B.K.S. Iyengar, founder of Iyengar Yoga, and considered one of the foremost yoga teachers in the world.
I went to my first yoga class in ages this morning. I have to say that it felt good. The class was advertised as:
A gentle yoga practice for those who have persistent health concerns such as chronic pain, arthritis, depression, MS or are recovering from illness or injury.
“Hey, I fit the bill perfectly!”
There were 2 choices, a chair class or a mat class – I chose the mat class thinking it would be more ‘yoga like’. My main concerns were flexibility of my joints and the fact that my hands and wrists don’t bend very much and I can’t support myself on them. Both of my worries quickly dissipated as I realized there were props and adaptations for everything.
Today we worked from our feet to knees; we will move up the body each class. It feels so good to move my body in that way and not have people look strangly at you because of how you look or move. I remember one yoga class I tried (gentle restorative), and I was rolling around on the floor trying to propel myself enough to get up! It’s amazing what you can’t do without the use of your hands and wrists, until you learn to adapt. Anyways, the other students were just looking at me like I had pooped my pants until the instructor came over and I explained my problem. Needless to say, I have been hesitant to join another yoga group. I really felt I would get so much more out of a class designed for people with limitations and then I found this one! Oh, and guess what? Not one person was wearing yoga pants on top of their thong! I did not see one floss-wedged crack!
The benefits of exercise, especially for those of us with limited mobility, chronic pain etc far outweigh the drawbacks. I would encourage anyone who is not doing something to keep looking until you find something that fits for you. I feel better today and know that I will feel ‘betterer and betterer’ with each class.