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Previous Hip Injury and Yoga Practice

Many people turn to yoga as a way of healing hip injuries that they acquired elsewhere. Some people find that their injuries improve with mild stretching and strengthening, but others find that their symptoms get much worse.

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Hamstring Injury, Sciatica and Sacroiliac Pain in Yoga

There are three muscles in the legs that are collectively referred to as the Hamstrings – the Biceps Femoris, Semitendinosus and Semimembranosus. All three Hamstrings attach to the Ischial Tuberosity of the pelvis – the sit-bone. At the knee, the Biceps Femoris attaches to the outside of the Femur and the knee and the Semitendinosus and Semimembranosus together are attached to the inside of the knee. The Hamstrings can be visualized as forming a tripod with the knee as the…

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Wrist Pain from Vinyasa Yoga

Vinyasa, arm balances and handstands often leave yoga practitioners complaining of wrist pain, especially at the Ulnar side of the hand, that is, the base of the palm furthest from the thumb. To combat this, the focus is on various hand positions, pushing down with the base of the thumb, rising up onto the fingers when jumping through, Pada Hastasasna or wrist guards. An analysis of body mechanics provides another alternative: we are designed to be able to make both…

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A Word about Posture

A report my Eyal Lederman CPDO Online Journal (2010), March, p1-14. found that there was: • No proven link between posture and pain. • No proven link for lower back pain and: core strength, disc degeneration, hamstring or psoas tightness, SI joint, pelvic asymmetry, lordosis and kyphosis, muscle strength, trunk asymmetry. In fact Lower back pain can be better predicted by biological, psychological and social factors! Structure and pain is a common association to make. However, research into the subject shows…

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Adductors, the Pelvic Floor and Lower Back Pain

Pelvic floor contractions are used in Yoga as part of Pranayama practise – Mula Bandha. The pelvic floor also has an important stabilising function, as it controls the forward and backward movements of the Sacrum – these movements are also called Nutation and Counter Nutation. If the pelvic floor is tight and inelastic, the Sacrum remains tucked (Nutated) in all movements, which can contribute to lower-back pain because a lack of movement here can flatten the natural curve of the…

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Reciprocal Inhibition and the Hips

Reciprocal Inhibition is a process that the body uses to create movements. All movement is controlled by opposing sets of muscles, called Agonists or prime movers, and Antagonists that create the opposing force which returns the part being moved back to its original position. Movement is also aided by other surrounding muscles, called Synergists, and they mostly function as stabilisers, so that movement can occur in a controlled way. For example, if you wish to extend your knee, the Quadriceps…

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How Hip Problems Cause Knee Pain

Pain felt at the outer or inner sides of the knees is often directly related to the hips and can have a variety of causes, which need to be assessed and treated by a specialist. As explained in Knee Injury and Pain in Yoga, the Gluteus Medius stabilises the pelvis in a horizontal plane and when the Gluteus Medius is not functioning, other muscles take over. Hip stabilisation then occurs via the Tensor Fascia Latae (TFL) muscle, which is connected…

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Knee Injury and Pain in Yoga

Knee injury in yoga usually involves tearing the Meniscus, a double ring of cartilage between the Femur (thighbone) and the Tibia (lower leg bone) – either through carelessness – by practicing asanas with the feet and the knees pointing in different directions, or in Padmasana. It is also possible to overstretch the supporting ligaments at the sides of the knees. People also experience pain behind the knee, on the outer side of the knee, on the inner side below the…

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Lateral Pelvic Tilt in Yoga Practice

When the hips are can’t be held level in a horizontal plane while standing on one leg, lateral pelvic tilt occurs, caused by weakness of the Hip abductor muscles, especially the Gluteus Medius. The pelvis tilts down to one side and the head of the Femur is pushed outwards. This is called Trendelenburg sign by physical therapists. The Gluteus Medius acts a hip abductor but it is also a very important knee stabiliser: if the knee is bent when standing…

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Pain at the Kneecap

Knee pain that occurs around the kneecap is usually called Patellofemoral pain and can be caused by tightness in the Rectus Femoris muscle or an imbalance between the Quadricep muscles that stabilise the patella. One way that this occurs is through weakness of the Gluteus Medius in the hip. The Tensor Fascia Latae muscle is an internal rotator of the hip so if it compensates for a weak Gluteus Medius, The knee sways inwards towards the centre-line of the body,…

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