Please be mindful this may make you cringe?
Hamstring POP - Monday Morning 22/10/18
I started my day like any other morning with a gentle flow, which became a little stronger than normal and my body definitely told me so. This is a message to anyone out there that practices yoga to be very mindful and careful. As a teacher I am forever telling my students to never force the body but to breathe and allow the body to move with the guidance of the breath.
Today I was moving from extended side angle pose, using a bound pose to move into straight legged trikonasana (triangle pose). Now the funny thing is, is that I did not feel force at all, but given my flexibility, I should have backed off and not moved to the point of full exertion. Be very mindful of this guys, especially if you are bendy. I have been practising yoga now for 5 years, up to 3 hours a day (self-study and meditation included).
I practice a lot of hot yoga at our studio Intrinsic Mind Holistic Health and Wellness, but due to teaching a majority of the time, never go into full extension of a pose, this is the way it should be, always leave space. Over exerting in anyway can cause injury, even if you feel as though you are not forcing. I do love the hot space for the reason you feel so flexible, this is what you do have to be very mindful of though. Your body has limitations!
4 to 5 years ago now, I severely strained my hamstrings due to repetitive movement during Les Mills training which moved me into Yoga in the first place and assisted in the healing process. Although I only have a grade 1 tear (Diagnosed by a Physio today Tuesday 23/10/18) as explained below in the video, it will be like starting all over again. So, I will continue to blog my progress so that you can see the healing process. For now though, I am not to fully extend my hamstring for at least 1 week and slowly start to build up the strength and length once again. Given I am healthy physically, emotionally and mentally I plan to recover quickly. Let’s see how I go!
I do really hope this can be a word of warning to take your practice at your own pace. listen to your body and don't move beyond limits.
Asana is not about the flexibility it is more about the sensation and moving deeper into your practice. In class I often ask students to dig deep, this often brings awareness to the posture with breath, the length, the alignment and the sensation.
It has only been the past 18 months of my practice that I have started to realise the full extent of yoga asana (postures). The benefits move beyond the physical and more into mind and spirit (the self). If you think about it, whatever mental state you are in at the time of practice will affect your practice. Sometimes the best thing to do is simply rest and breathe to bring you into a state of calm before your practice. This is why we give you space before beginning the practice. If you can come to your mat with intention of not just the physical gratitude and moving a little deeper, your yoga practice will shift to an amazing soulful journey forever changing.
This is so humbling and worthwhile. I will always love my inversions and arm balances, but I now move into these with intention and a different state of mind.
My first Hot Pilates class was very much adjusted. Due to not being able to lengthen through my hamstring at all.
All Bridges - I did AB work out
No Jumping and burpies - I did wall push-ups
No full planks - supported knee planks
With my background in anatomy and fitness, I was able to adjust to still be able to partake in the class. The first thing I noticed after was how much I wanted to stretch out.... :( I couldn't do my favourite posture Happy baby. Waaaaaaa.... It will take time.
Lets talk a little more about this injury.
How Does It Feel?
Sharp pain. When the injury occurs, one may feel an abrupt, sharp pain at the back of the thigh or buttocks.
A “pop” sound or sensation. This sudden pain is sometimes accompanied by an audible or palpable “pop” and a sensation of the leg giving way. As shown in my case.
- A sudden, sharp pain in the back of the thigh or in the buttocks
- A feeling of a "pop" or tearing in the muscle
- Bruising within hours or days after the injury
- Tenderness to touch in the affected area
- Difficulty sitting comfortably, lifting the leg when lying down, or straightening the knee
- Difficulty walking or running, resulting in a limp
How Is It Diagnosed?
- What were you doing when you first felt the pain, and did you feel a “pop"?
- Where do you feel the pain now?
- Did you notice any bruising after the injury?
- What were you not able to do immediately following the injury, and how have you been functioning since the injury (eg, walking, sleeping, lifting your leg)?
- Have you had a similar injury before?
- Observation, to note any discoloration or bruising
- Pain assessment, to identify your current pain level, and the activities that make your pain better or worse
- Palpation (gently pressing with the fingers), to pinpoint the location and size of the tender area through touch, which will help determine the severity of the injury
- Range-of-motion test, to compare the motion of your injured leg with your healthy leg
- Muscle-strength test, to determine the strength of the hamstring muscles when bending or straightening your knee and hip
- Gait analysis, to note any limping or changes in how you are walking
- Grade I: Mild strain with minimal tearing; usually feels like a pulled or cramping muscle.
- Grade II: Moderate strain with partial tearing; may cause a stinging or burning sensation at the back of the thigh.
- Grade III: A severe, complete muscle tear; may result in a “lump” on the back of the thigh where the muscle has torn.
Please feel free to ask questions comment, like and share
I would love to hear your story or even interview you if you have suffered with the same injury.
The more personal information we can get on this the better.