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LS LIVEstream Practice June 14, 2020 - calves and feet

Deepen your practice

Lay on your back with your arms and legs relaxed and palms turned up.

It is best to lie in a warm comfortable spot. Develop a space where you will practice on a regular basis. It is good to practice in the same space so your mind will begin to develop habits of relaxation just by being in the space.

Activate your breathing muscles

  1. Find your pelvic wall. (Muscles at the bottom of your pelvis around your butthole). Lightly contract these muscles; visualize pulling them to your feet. (This will take some practice).
  2. Lightly depress your pelvis bones together and to the ground. This activates our transverse abdominal muscles. It is important to lightly depress the muscles just between the pelvis bones to the ground as they fire the large muscle that surrounds our midsection. This muscle forces the diaphragm to automatically contract creating a vacuum to pull air into the lungs.

Nose breathing only

Slowly and deeply inhale through your nose filling the chest up with as much oxygen as you can. As you fill the lungs up with air the muscles between the ribs will fire and move the ribcage toward the chin. The last muscles that fire are the scalenes located at the sides of your neck. These muscles lift up the first ribs filling the lungs as much as possible.

Count your breath to control your mind

As you slowly breathe through the nose count your breath in your mind. Most people will begin with a breath count that is lower than 10 seconds. Our goal is to increase the amount of oxygen we bring into the lungs increasing the amount of oxygen flow to the muscles and all cells. The in-breath is work; like training our muscles in the gym.

Actively relax your body to the ground

As you breathe out scan your body with your mind to find any areas that you are unconsciously holding off the ground. Tell your muscles to relax in that part of the body. Most of us will still hold our bodies off the ground even though we are lying down.

Practice for a few minutes each day. Your body will learn a new state of relaxation and incorporate that into your daily patterns. Your breathing pattern will become slower and deeper.

Air governs movement, and sustains the harmony of the cycles which attune all vibration in the body with the one source. Air rules the beat of the heart, the lungs, respiration, and peristalsis throughout the body. The thoracic cavity, home of the fundamental life rhythm of breath, is the center of the air harmonic in the body.
(p.13 “Light on Pranayama” BKS Iyengar)

1. PURPLE BALL FIRST.

BallN the ball on our belly targets the psoas and tranverse abdominus muscles which are responsible for a great deal of our back and body pain.

The GREEN Backhealer ball is to be used for mid, upper back, and lower back muscles.

The RED Backhealer ball is to be used on the facia and tendons once the muscles have become supple. If you have been stuck for some time your facia my be stuck on your bones. Maybe on the top of your pelvis or around the si joint.

Place the appropriate colored ball on the target muscle in the position shown in the chart above.

2. BACKHEALER BREATHING INCORPORATED WITH THE BALL.

The breath works simultaneously to rewire the tone and function of the muscles and tendons.

3. BEST TO USE THE BALL ON A HARD SURFACE.

Yoga mat on hardwood floor or on carpet.  The Backhealer ball may also be used on your bed, a chair, couch, airplane seat, car seat, etc.

4. DO NOT ROLL.

Lay on the ball in the position until the muscle softens then move to the next position. You should move only 1-2 inches at first until you become more aware of the most sensitive areas of your body.

As you become more accustomed to the method and the pain on your body place the ball onto the positions that are most sensitive first.

5. ONE SIDE THEN THE OTHER.

To maintain balance in the body it is best to use the ball on one side and then the other side of your body.

6. DO ONLY AS MUCH AS YOU CAN HANDLE.

The key to using the Backhealer ball effectively is to stimulate the sensitive area only as much as you can handle and not more. If your brain is screaming, “Ouch, ouch, this is too much”. Your body will not relax and the brain will not be able to reset the muscle tone. You know what they say “too much of a good thing…”

When releasing chronically contracted muscle tissue you may experience some pain, tightness, nausea, or light-headedness. These sensations will pass as your breathing increases. The body is trying to rid itself of the acids that have been stored in your chronically contracted body.

7. GO SLOW.

Spend only 1-2 minutes on each position and use only a percentage of your body weight on top of the ball. As the sensitivity decreases you will be able to pressurize the body more without pain.

8. REST AFTERWARD.

Immediately after doing the breathing and the ball it in essential that you lay still for at least a minute. This gives the body the opportunity to reset itself and take full advantage of the wonderful work you just did on your body. This resting or SAVASANA can be done at anytime especially when moving from one side to the other.

9. MOVEMENT AFTER THE REST.

Follow with gentle stretching, yoga, and movement.

10. REPEAT DAILY.

When muscles are supple and mobility returns use the method to keep supple and flexible.

  • BACKHEALER BREATHING IN MOVEMENT – Maintain calm, continued nose breathing throughout the entire pose, the transition, and into the next movement. To activate the breathing muscles more effectively lightly pull your pelvic wall muscles towards your feet. When the body is feeling too much stress the breath will stop or shallow. Watch the breath, as it is your guide.
  • CONSCIOUS MOVEMENT – Movement and transitions are slow and conscious at all times. Transitions may speed up when progression to the next series is attained. Time spent in poses may increase as length and strength  is gained.
  • LENGTHENING ONE SIDE OF THE BODY WHILE STRENGTHENING THE OTHER  at the same time. The body uses antagonist (opposite) muscle groups to create movement utilizing itself as levers and fulcrums. A fulcrum is the support about which a lever pivots.
  • SPACE – While in the pose strive to create space in each joint and tissue by reaching the body apart from it’s mid-point at the belly button.
  • SYMMETRY  – Strive to achieve symmetry between ease and performance in all movements. Strive to achieve symmetry in all ranges of motions.
  • ADDING NEW MOVEMENTS – New movement is added to your practice when there is no fear on attempt of movement and no pain for continued periods after movement.
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It is imperative that you discuss all self care practices with your doctors, physical therapists, and healthcare professionals. This is in your best interest as it ensures safety and cohesiveness in your health programs.

All information on this site is for education only.

Pelvic wall – 1st muscles to contract when inhaling

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