Daily awareness by practising yoga for scoliosis

Daily awareness by practising yoga for scoliosis

As I shared a little something about body awareness in a previous post called '5 reasons why yoga is good for my (back) health'. I now want to explain a little bit more about how this relates to dealing with my scoliosis and solving my pain. Of course, my scoliosis isn't just there when I am in pain, it is also present when I am feeling well. It is there 24/7. So it made sense to me to pay more insights to how I move throughout the day, in order to learn more about my movement patterns. Because pain isn't something that just pops up. It is usually created. Whether I like it or not, it is probably from my own doing. And I need to take responsibility about that. And the best way to start is by practising daily awareness.

Gain insights in my scoliotic patterns

My body made no sense to me for a long time. My scoliosis threw me off. Sometimes literally by stumbling or lack of coordination. And I didn't understand it for a long time. When I first started my Yoga for Scoliosis practice, I had other people with scoliosis telling me about their experience and taught me about these so called 'scoliotic patterns' everyone with scoliosis tends to have. I don't know if it would have been possible for me to gain these insights by myself. It would for sure have taken me a long time. Therefore, I am really grateful for my Yoga for Scoliosis teachers to share their knowledge and provide me with the tools to gain awareness and understanding of my body.

Catch my 'hanging' moments

These tools I gained, I could now use to cultivate awareness of my movement. At first it was just doing my yoga practice on my mat and slowly tuning in with everything my body was telling me. However, only when I started practicing daily awareness, I found the most progress for understanding my scoliosis and pains. For instance, with scoliosis I can sometimes hang too much on one side of my body or hang too much in my joints or forget to keep my eyes on the horizon. I was catching myself during doing the dishes, waiting on a bus or sitting behind my desk. Besides these physical aspects, yoga also integrates the mind and utilises the observing power in order to create awareness and understanding of patterns. There doesn't need to be any judgement. I learned to not see it as faults, but just as patterns that had developed and I could learn to work with.

Finding my symmetry

As I was learning about my 'hanging' moment, I could now focus on how I could align myself again. Aligning myself toward symmetry. So what does this mean with scoliosis? Of course not necessarily straight. It is more about creating alignment; starting at the feet, unlocking knees, finding the right muscles to activate and not holding any tension while carrying my head. Yes, it sounds like a lot. And it felt like a lot at first. But the more and more I started to understand my patterns the quicker and easier it got to implement alignment and find my symmetry. Such as, even out my feet while doing the dishes, and making sure my eyes are on the horizon while working at my desk. I am still working on that last one though.. But. Practice makes perfect. Or, as I dislike the word perfect, I'd rather say, practice makes progress.

Take notice of the habits and thoughts, and just breathe

As I wrote, 'starting alignment at the feet', I wonder whether this is correct. It might just start with the mind. Why? Because I needed to find the peace of mind to be able to observe my patterns. To not judge myself. And work on my symmetry in a constructive way.Β Ever since I can remember, I always wanted to do my best for everyone. So my body made sure it was in an activate state in order to respond to other people their expectations of me. This made me use my body in a unhealthy way. At least, it created a lot of unnecessary tension, which caused lack of space in my body. Thus for me personally, I believe my thoughts have an influence of how much relaxation I can give my body in order to find my alignment. Whenever I get stuck in a habit. Physically or mentally. I try to remind myself to just breathe. No judgment. Just another chance to notice my patterns, find my symmetry and practice my daily awareness.