I was looking at my facebook feed and saw a familiar style post. I won’t remember it exactly but it basically showed pictures of about seven yoga postures and had the claim written around them basically saying, do these and cure low back pain and tight hips. There was a certain amount of cheerleading and “yep gotta do this” posted in the comments below.



Stuff like this I usually roll my eyes at and pass by but I couldn’t this time and typed a longish comment under it giving some qualifications to the claims. It made me realize that a blog post on this might be timely. Ironically just that morning I gave a class that I discussed some of the “gaps” in yoga with respect to fitness.



There is so much positive information out there on yoga these days it is hard to find someone that doesn’t at least say, I should try it. And really, I agree, you should.



Unfortunately, the positive info out there seems to have got some thinking that yoga cures all. It doesn’t, well not really.



If you embrace the complete yogic lifestyle, not just the funky twisty postures you see people doing, then you will be bowled over at the scope of this practice and its ability to elevate aspects of your life that you never thought it could touch.



I could go on in this vein of thought for a while but I am keeping this simple and only going to discuss the aspect of yoga that most are familiar with, the physical practice.



Here is what I want to say in a nutshell:


Individual postures do not “fix” anything.


One more time….


Individual postures do not “fix” anything.



Say what???



Each of us is a unique and very special human. We have a physical/emotional history and current state that cannot be duplicated by anyone. This means the application of any stimulus (ie a yoga posture) will have a unique impact on each person doing it.



Confusing this is while we are unique we also have similarities, especially through a given culture. For instance, posture in North American culture can pretty much be expected to have at least a touch of “head forward” (desk work, phones etc) stance, runners will have common areas of tension or weakness etc.



This is what has promoted the yoga for “xyz” movement. Seriously you can google yoga for “insert what ever you want here” and you will likely find something. (ok just for fun I googled yoga for sex, seriously even I was surprised at what was there!)



This isn’t so bad if this yoga is presented by a qualified instructor or at least a caution is given as to who the practice might not be appropriate for and that pushing yourself to perform anything will not give benefit. By pushing I mean blasting through yellow lights. I did a whole post on these a while back, here is the link this will help you understand some of the things to consider as you practice.



Bottom line is never do anything that little voice inside says not to, also it is a good idea to let go of the inner coach that says go harder, further or try to duplicate something that you feel you “have” to. A practice is beneficial when completed with complete body awareness and respect. Know that if something “worked” for someone else it doesn’t mean it will for you.



I love yoga, but I love myself more and will always listen to my inner wisdom as to what is right for me. If you do get into yoga beyond the physical you will discover that embracing the full practice of yoga (this means all of the eight limbs , learn what this means here) means that your physical practice will never go beyond what is right for you, but additionally will offer you the greatest benefit.



Hopefully this responds a bit to the “yoga is a panacea for all!” movement or the looking for a quick fix mindset. Like most things health and wellness yoga requires a thoughtful, informed and consistent practice.



I hope this helps, I am always happy to answer any questions you have…so why not ask?



Okay, own up…how many of you googled yoga for sex???



Happy day, zdr