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Mindful Spinal Movements

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Mindful Spinal Movements

A major concern I’ve found with my students who have a bone loss diagnosis is maintaining proper posture and not moving the spine in a way that might cause harm. This is completely understandable! Maintaining good posture will help to reduce your risk of developing both kyphosis (rounding of the upper back) and fractures. I believe we have an added challenge in today’s society since many of us are oftentimes looking down on our devices for long periods of time throughout the day in keeping the shoulders and upper back from rounding while maintaining healthy posture.

Of course yoga is a great way to work on your posture and build strength in your back to keep your spine straight. Keep in mind that even though you want to keep your spine straight, you also want to try to preserve all of the movements of the spine in order to maintain mobility! With the exception of flexion (rounding of the back) the other movements including side bending, back bending (extension), and twisting (rotation) should be safe for you to do as long as you are mindful when practicing the movements.

Spinal Extension

Modified Cow Pose, where the back rounds (the counter movement to Cat Pose), is a pose you should avoid if you have osteoporosis/osteopenia, however gentle backbends such as Cow Pose can help maintain mobility in your lower back.
For those with a bone loss diagnosis: move from cow pose to a flat back in a very mindful way. Being intentional about our movements will help to keep the body safe.


Twisting
Twisting is another movement that is a very functional movement. If you stop to think about how many times throughout your day you turn to reach for something it is probably quite a bit. However, when practicing twists in your yoga practice you want to make sure you are doing so with a straight spine and not twisting too deeply.
To come into the pose: Take one leg straight, bend the opposite knee, take your hand or elbow around your knee, with the other hand behind your back close to the hip. You may think of your back arm/hand as a kickstand on a bike helping to keep the spine straight. From there, take a deep breath in and lengthen the spine and rotate away from the bent knee. As always, be mindful of your movements and move slowly. Keep your twist minimal if you have a bone loss diagnosis.

Forward Folding
Any sort of rounding in the back as I said above is to be avoided for risk of fracture. Yet again it is not to be avoided… just modified! Instead hip-hinging is a great exercise as it helps to build core strength, mobility in the hips, and helps to stretch the backs of the legs.
To come into the pose: Stand with your feet approximately hip distance apart. Bring your hands to your hip creases hinge from the hips and lower your hands to your shins. Try to balance the weight of your feet evenly between the toes and the heals.

Alternatively, you could put your hands on the seat of the chair to fold forward or also on yoga blocks if needed to help you feel more comfortable in the pose.

Keep in mind, you know your body best! If there are movements you know do not feel good in your body, cause pain or discomfort avoid them. I hope this is helpful for you! If you have any questions or comments be sure to post them below!!

 

NB Loves!!

I thought I would share some random things I am loving right now.

Recently on my scrolls through Instagram, I saw another influencer recommend this book, Inward by Yung Pueblo. I have been sharing passages in some of yoga classes lately so if you take my classes you may have heard a reading from Inward already.  This book is amazing!!  If you are looking for a little inspiration, all you have to do is open the book to any page and there you go! This book would make a great gift.


These may be a little silly to be sharing on a yoga blog, but I loved these Zipper File Bags  so much I thought I would share the love. These bags are made a mostly waterproof durable nylon material.  They are 13 X 9.4 so they hold a regular 81/2 X 11 sheets of paper and perfect to transport papers in your laptop bag and so many other uses.  I have used one to store my Kindle.
They would also be perfect for traveling to store makeup, Ipad, jewelry, snacks, and the list goes on. 

And one more love for you… I hardly ever buy tennis shoes without trying them on as I am super picky about how my tennis shoes  fit, but due to Covid and not wanting to go into the store to try on shoes, I took a chance and order these  Adidas Women’s Ultraboost 20 Running Shoes  online and I love them! They fit true to size, are really comfortable, come in a bunch of different colors, and for me have the perfect amount of support.

Be Well,
Nicole

The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding any medical conditions.

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