exercise

Gentle Yoga: Breathing, Relaxation, and MS

Lisa Emrich Health Guide September 16, 2011
  • When I signed up for a six week session of Gentle Yoga classes, I didn’t realize that September is National Yoga Month.  What perfect timing for my newest activity...gentle yoga. In prior years, the National MS Society’s local chapter has worked with Fairfax County recreation centers...

5 Comments
  • Vicki
    Health Guide
    Sep. 17, 2011

    Aw, yoga. Glad to see you trying again, Lisa. And thanks for refering to my previous articles.

     

    MS is so good for people with MS, especially those who have limited abilities. MS can be adapted as abilities fade. Of course there are flowing movements such as the popular sun salutation routine to individual poses and the vital breathing and stretching exercises....

    RHMLucky777

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    Aw, yoga. Glad to see you trying again, Lisa. And thanks for refering to my previous articles.

     

    MS is so good for people with MS, especially those who have limited abilities. MS can be adapted as abilities fade. Of course there are flowing movements such as the popular sun salutation routine to individual poses and the vital breathing and stretching exercises. Find your comfort level, try a little more, but do not go too far.

     

    MSers can benefit from MS and all related programs like Tai Chi and even Martial Arts provide clarity of mind and peace. Am I preaching yet? Sorry.

     

    I am glad your class is for gentle yoga. My last teacher had been trained in yoga for MS, and her MS yoga classes are large and full. I had her come to the house for private instruction, and, amazingly, it cost the same as physical therapy. Also, your insurance might cover it.

     

    Here's the trick - practice at home between classes and even after the classes are over. At the very least, continue with breathing and stretching. In addition to exercise, these two tools help with stress, too. Feel good as well as offer coping skill. Works for me. ~ Vicki

  • Melissa
    Sep. 19, 2011

    We're on the same page! I started yoga this month as well after a reccomendation from my neurologist to help me with my anxiety and balance. It really has been working for me. I find on the days that I don't do it are days that I feel worse.

     

    On thats note, off to do some yoga! ;)

     

    Melissa

    http://melissa020803.blogspot.com/

  • Amy Gurowitz
    Health Guide
    Sep. 17, 2011

    Having just completed the summer with a laundry list of MS symptoms that are stress related, I looked at my You Can Do It Yoga dvd and decided to give it a go again. It's a phenomenal program, but I was finding it hard to relax when all of the moves that I could do easily just a few months before, were now really difficult. And that stressed me out. I did attend...

    RHMLucky777

    Read More

    Having just completed the summer with a laundry list of MS symptoms that are stress related, I looked at my You Can Do It Yoga dvd and decided to give it a go again. It's a phenomenal program, but I was finding it hard to relax when all of the moves that I could do easily just a few months before, were now really difficult. And that stressed me out. I did attend an MS Society sponsored yoga session last year... and sadly found that I needed a coke to soothe my dizzy nauseous self when I was. A coke... now that is counter intuitive for healthy living, isn't it!  I'm glad you found something that works for you.

    Thanks for sharing (and I'll see you Monday!)

    ~Amy

    • Cathy
      Health Guide
      Sep. 17, 2011

      Monday?  Let me know if it's anything good that I can listen in on!

       

      Yes, sometimes the dizziness does get in the way of yoga and I, too, have used the video that Amy mentioned.  We go at our own pace, do what we can and if we can't - which invariably happens - we take a break.  We can only try our best.......Laughing

  • Cathy
    Health Guide
    Sep. 17, 2011

    Lisa,

     

    It is wonderful you have begun taking yoga classes.  I have taken yoga on and off for several years.  When I was really in a good groove of attending weekly classes, I absolutely loved it.  My teacher would adapt the class for me (most of the others were intermediate).  My MS prevented me, at the time, from doing the downward...

    RHMLucky777

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    Lisa,

     

    It is wonderful you have begun taking yoga classes.  I have taken yoga on and off for several years.  When I was really in a good groove of attending weekly classes, I absolutely loved it.  My teacher would adapt the class for me (most of the others were intermediate).  My MS prevented me, at the time, from doing the downward dog, so my instructor modified it with standing next to a full-length mirror and putting my hands near both sides of my head and placing my feet about a foot in back of me, a few feet apart.  It felt good, and within weeks I was doing the regular downward dog on the floor along with everyone else.  I was so proud of myself.  It took time to stretch my body, that felt tight as a drum, until it didn't hurt so much, but eventually I was feeling and doing great. I did the classes at my own pace, in my own time, with my instructor helping me every step of the way.  I began to walk better, stood taller and was more aware of my body and more sure of my steps.  Like Vicki said, I stretched in between classes and even now still practice stillness, meditation and concentrating on my breath. 

     

    I wish I could find a class today with an instructor like the one I had.  The NMSS offers classes but, as you said, never at good times for me.  I will keep searching for an adaptive class.

     

    In the meantime, keep up the great work, Lisa.  I hope you keep feeling better and better.  Let me know how it goes!