Having the ability to adjust, breath and stretch your body at home on a daily basis is the most important aspect of your treatment plan…this allows you to manage and re-adjust your body, mind, and spiritual self everyday. You know your body the best, better than anyone else, and with the correct “tools” to manage your own body, you will be able to have optimum health all on your own, and a balanced mind!
Breathing Breath is what we can consciously control for our Central Nervous System (brain). When we are breathing too quickly, or breathing not at all or very slowly, the brain senses that there is a physiological problem. Anxiety and other types of overactive CNS can be very controlled with breathing exercises. There are so many, theses are the simplest and best to start with. Always try to visualize your breathe coming up from the ground and out through your head to the universe and back down to earth…yellow, orange, and white are good colors to focus on in the beginning of your practice towards meditation 🙂
Start by sitting/laying in a comfortable position, you can do this anywhere so just be comfortable whether you are on a chair, couch, floor, bed. Sitting up straight with your Ishial Tuberosities (butt bones where your hamstrings attach) shift your extra love on butt to connect yourself to the earth, grounding down. Sit up straight with your chest, heart chakra, open and out to the universe. Inhale what serves you- energy, goodness, healing, and love. Exhale what doesn’t serve you- anger, jealously, pain, and love for others even those that you don’t want to give it to….they need it the most probably. Begin breathing in very slow, from the bottom of your lungs, moving up through your chakra’s and opening up your inside chi up through your neck and head up to the universe. Exhale the same way, slowly from above your head down through your spine back down to the ground and earth. Just continue at a pace of breathing that is comfortable for YOU!
Breath of Fire (Diaphragmatic breathing)
- strengthens all the abdominal organs and trims the waistline.
- Exhales unexpelled toxings from the body.
Standing Deep Breathing
- Teaches you to use 100 percent of your lungs.
- Most people use only a small percentage of their lung capacity, never allowing the lungs to reach the maximum expansion that nature intended.
- Expands the lungs and increases circulation, elevating your core temperature and preparing the muscles for exercise.
- The Psoas muscle is the major hip flexor of our body, it runs from the inner top of our femur, under our pelvic bone, through and upward our abdomen, and attaches on the lumbar vertebra-when this muscle is chronically contracted to causes our hips to tilt anteriorly, giving a butt out appearance….it is the antagonist with the major hip extensor, QL, sitting nest to it in our low back, which will chronically contract to balance the contacted psoas, so there is a constant tightness in the hips and low back causing lack of mobility and pain. For QL see below for Cat and Cow yoga.
- The alignment for this stretch, like every yoga asana, is most important, to feel the stretch correctly and not to push it….you go to your level of comfort, when you feel the stretching hold it for 10-20 seconds and continue to breath evenly.
- Your back leg should be resting on the floor with pressure above your knee, not on it, the front leg should be ankle to knee alignment, with a 90 degree angle of the knee. As you start to lean forward you will feel the stretch, wiggle your back leg back (you can have your leg straight, no bent knee is better for me) and you will find that perfect spot. Keep your torso straight over your hips, sitting up straight, if you are folding forward you are contracting the muscles we are stretching, so DONT. Keep Breathing.
Car Exercises/Neck Exercises/Low Back Exercises
Yoga poses for spinal alignment
Rolled Up Towel, yes, you can stop the “triangle of terror”
- Place large, tightly rolled towel under your neck below your C7/T1 area all the way up to your occiput (low skull bone)…make sure you lay down slowly only vertebra at a time, this will allow for your neck to stretch out correctly and easily. Lay over the towel breathing deeply for 10-20 minutes anytime. Over time, this will help restore the slight C-curve (Lordosis) in your neck, taking pressure off of the area between your shoulder blades….letting the muscles relax and the vertebra can reposition better suited for your body (more room for the discs and nerves).
TAS- Tight Ass Syndrome
- Do you stand with your butt cheeks clenched and not even know it? Are your hips stuck in one position, tilted towards the front or back of your body? Do you have low back pain, pain down your sciatic nerve, or/and inability to tilt your pelvis easily? It is a back up for our body, to have structural support and hold our hips, when our glutes and lateral rotators (the group of 6 muscles beneath the glutes) chronically contract to add support. This tilts the hips posteriorly, causing the QL muscles and Erectors to chronically contract for support, while the Psoas muscles are stretching all the time…so, tight ass, tight low back, tight thoracic (middle) back and shoulders are not happy campers. It can feel like “sciatica” which is when a vertebra or disc is crushing the sciatic nerve, or “greater trochanter bursitis” which is inflammation and pain around your greater trochanter. Either of these are not an easy fix and need medical attention, but, TAS is an easy fix, stretching every day, epsom salt baths, and managable without medicine! Try these exercises.
- Laying on your back start with your feet on the floor or bed, so your knees go up to the ceiling. Stretching the Right side first of the lateral rotators, take your right ankle over to your left knee with your right knee going out in a figure 4 position, slowly push your right knee towards a 90 angle away from you while keeping both of your hips (backside) down on the ground. To increase the stretch step your left foot closer to your butt. Keep breathing and rock slowly back and forth. THERE IS NO NEED TO REACH THROUGH YOUR LEGS TO PULL FOR THIS STRETCH….THIS CAN HURT YOUR NECK AND SHOULDERS.
- Cat/Cow /Table yoga flow
- Hip tilting exercise, (this is Cat/Cow without having to be on your hands and knees) sad dog tucking tail-stretching the QL muscle, contracting the Psoas, then reversing and contracting your QL, sticking out your tail and relaxing your Psoas…think about “Dirty Dancing” and freely moving your hips, just like in Cat/Cow/Table flow
- Deep breathing while pelvic tilting (the above exercise) will help release the tension in your vertebra and ribs, you will hopefully release muscle tension enough allowing for the vertebra to adjust and hear a “pop”….good job, you just adjusted yourself 🙂