Cool Partner Yoga Poses
• If the hamstrings are very tight, there can be more stress. This is not usually a problem for recreational runners who don’t do speedwork or lateral motion sports, and keep the stride short.
• Chronic hamstring Yoga Injuries are caused by all of the above, but scars from past Yoga Injuries can develop, preventing normal function of the muscle.
• Mild pain may be healed during a couple of rest days. Icing is useful. Do not stretch. Massage can be very helpful, especially if the pain lasts more than a couple of days. The foam roller and “the stick” are good modes of treatment.
• Start all runs with a 3-5 minute gentle walk. Avoid hills. Gradually introduce the body to yoga with 10-60 seconds of yoga, alternating with 60 seconds of walking.
• If the injury persists and the problem is still in the middle of the muscle, or if the pain is fairly strong, see a doctor. Physical therapy modalities can help, especially a focused manual therapy technique (various types should be used).
• If the pain is at the ischial tuberosity, icing is more difficult but still helps. Massage can be beneficial if you don’t have a bursitis (massage may make it worse). Massage is actually a good diagnosis technique to determine if you have a bursitis or not. A steroid injection may help a bursitis. Injecting other hamstring conditions is not recommended. There are special cushions available that make sitting less irritating.
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• In serious cases, extended time off from yoga may be required. During this time, water yoga can maintain a great deal of the yoga adaptations, and careful strengthening of the hamstring should help. If a given form of exercise produces more soreness, try other exercises. Cycling can be beneficial: The front thigh muscles are used a great deal in cycling, but the hamstrings get some gentle exercise. Make sure the seat is high enough to engage the hamstrings. Ride in an easy gear until the pain has improved. For long-term benefit the effort level needs to be significant – and not just pedaling easily. Spinning classes on a stationary bike can be helpful, also climbing hills while cycling. Cycling can be continued for as long as the pain continues and longer for prevention of future problems.
• Chronic hamstring Yoga Injuries don’t tend to heal with normal amounts of rest; or, the pain may go away for a while and then keep coming back. This indicates that the hamstrings did not have enough time to heal or there were excessive demands on them, too soon, during the return to yoga. To heal the hamstrings properly, it may be necessary to use several approaches at one time: 1) Strengthening of the gluteal muscles and the abdominal muscles. 2) Massage by a practitioner who has had plenty of experience treating athletes. 3) Completely evaluating the structure of the feet, legs and hips for symmetry and motion. 4) Evaluate the stride for proper body position. There are many sources of advice on proper stride, but pelvic position should be checked. When standing against a wall, the lower back, just above the waist, should be flattened against the wall without leaning away from the wall. If this is not happening, tighten abdominal muscles. Trying to maintain this pelvic position while yoga/walking decreases the stretch on the hamstrings, and provides other valuable benefits. Modalities using electrical current and other devices have been helpful to heal resistant cases. Stretching prescribed by a trained medical practitioner can be useful but be careful.
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