I have been working with M. in a private setting for the last 3 months. Being nearly 69, he’s young at heart and full of spirit.
He had been suffering from a crippling stiffness and mind-dulling immobility in his lower back and pelvis for many years. In the back of his head he had known that he needed to combine his sports and the irrefutable fact of ageing with a complimentary and balancing movement activity like yoga.
In our first class M. proved his believe in “no pain no gain”. That attitude had always been the driving force behind all his physical activities. My approach is one of feeling the body. I support you to recognise physical sensations in response to movement and postures so that you can move for the sake of being in a good relationship with your body. My intention is to teach you that by feeling your body and honouring it, you can live in peace with it. This is not an attitude that is promoted by the Western society we created and are living in.
When teaching someone with physical discomfort and pain, classical postures are oftentimes far-fetched. For a posture to be effective and stimulating the healing process, it needs meticulous exploration which rests on patience, mutual feedback and honesty. Feeling stuck in the above mentioned condition, M. was wiling to learn, understand, practice and integrate. These are promising conditions for a fruitful “yoga and beyond” adventure with me.
A much needed mindset-change
We spent several sessions on basic back- and pelvis mobilising postures and covered the preparation for M.’s daily self-practice with photos and rehearsals of the postures.
Besides all that, I repeatedly listened carefully to what he shared with me. About the pain and what it made him feel like. What he loves doing, is good at and struggles with. His relationships with people and his family. I observed him thoroughly to catch visible emotional charges that accompanied his sharings. All this teaches me how to even better serve him, skilfully and to the point.
In this week’s session everything was well aligned: his trust in the yoga based explorations, the personal connection we’d built over the weeks, the practice experience he’d gained through our work so far and his willingness to change his mindset in order to change his body’s habituation and response-ability. I felt this alignment and knew that M. was ready for a much needed change.
I pointed out the physical resistance in his joints and (muscle)tissues when doing simple leg raises in a supine position. M.’s immediate response was to push through. His pelvis would pivot, with the sacrum lifting off the floor. That all based on compression and/or tightness in his hip joints. He didn’t classify what he felt as hurt. I encouraged him to stop moving right where he met the resistance with the leg raise. He slowly but surely became aware of it and changed his range of motion. He practiced to not push through, but accept instead.
No pain, yet a lot to gain!
I guided him with my softest voice possible, slowly and patiently. He continued practicing the leg raises. He did his utmost best to not push through but accept. I could see how hard he had to work for that different outcome based on a changed attitude.
The best about all of this is that
HE LOVES CHALLENGES.
And this is a huge one for him! Therefore,
He left with a mission:
M. will continue to practice acceptance in his self-practice and not push through when feeling resistance. He can slowly rebuild his relationship with the body parts that need healing. I wish him great luck and look forward to guiding him further in his healing yoga practice!
All of us can heal. I’m right here for you – get in touch when you’re ready to start your healing!