Poor exercise habits increase your risk for spinal injuries

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Safe Body Detoxification(NaturalHealth365) Originally, yoga was created to help bring together the body and mind. Through a series of natural movements and meditation – we develop greater inner strength and flexibility. So why are so many people suffering with yoga-related injuries?

Is there a dark side to all these “power yoga” classes? Ninety-five percent of chronic pain in the body is a result of poor posture and biomechanics. On the next NaturalNews Talk Hour – you’ll discover how to use breathing to align your posture from the inside out; reduce muscle tension; dramatically increase your flexibility and avoid (unwanted) back surgeries!

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Let’s take a closer look at the growing trend of yoga injuries. Statistics suggest that as many as 30 to 40 percent of people doing yoga get some type of injury. In fact, according to the Consumer Products Safety Commission, 13,000 people went to the emergency room between 2004 and 2007 reporting yoga injuries. Yoga instructors (and students) must admit – something has to change.

Breathing natural from your core to prevent injuries

Michaelle Edwards, a yoga expert says, “Conscious breathing is a powerful way to connect with our deeper selves, but it is important that we do it in a way that supports our natural breathing process.” She goes on to say that, “in order to breathe naturally you must be able to relax your outer belly muscles and allow them to elongate when you inhale. In order to do this, breathing must begin with the movement of the rib cage and not the belly.”

“Learning to initiate breath from your rib cage can help balance, elongate and tone your body from the inside out. This core breathing can help correct poor posture, jumpstart your metabolism, massage your organs and can even make you a better lover.” Naturally, it almost goes without saying, if you can’t breathe comfortably – while doing any exercise routine – your risk for injury goes way up.

Avoid back surgery and save millions of dollars in medical bills

Over the years, millions of people opt for irreversible surgical procedures. Many health experts agree that most of these operations could be avoided with simple changes to lifestyle habits. For example, did you know that many people can eliminate chronic back pain by simply loosening up their calf and hamstring (back of thigh) muscles? Unfortunately, fitness industry professionals are teaching too many painful, ineffective movement patterns to clueless students.

Take for example the old “straighten your knees and trying to bend forward” exercise to help make you more flexible. Well, according to Michaelle Edwards, this movement (plus many others) can potentially lead to more harm than good. There are (3) simple tests to determine whether a movement pattern is healthy or not:

1. It should allow the spine to have its natural curves.

2. It should not restrict the ability to deeply and fully breathe from the rib cage.

3. It should have a real life correlation to functional movement positions.

Your rib cage and oblique muscles are activated through deep breathing, adding length to your neck and waist, and stability to your core. Many yoga poses and exercises are “right-angle” templates that distort spinal curves, over-stretch important stabilizing ligaments, and create repetitive strain injuries. The bottom line – all of this can be avoided by moving properly!

This week’s guest: Michaelle Edwards, yoga instructor and creator of YogAlign

Find out how to improve your posture; reduce muscle tension and physical pain – Thu. Nov. 15

Michaelle Edwards is an author, body-worker and yoga teacher who owns and operates the Kauai Yoga School on Kauai’s north shore. As a posture therapist and innovator, Michaelle has come up with a new way to become naturally aligned, which she calls YogAlign. She uses self-massage, deep core breathing, and core exercises designed to align the spine while stabilizing the joints.

Michaelle began developing her adaptation of yoga in 1992 when she tore her knee ligament practicing vinyasa yoga. As she healed, she began to create new poses that make anatomical sense in real-life body function. MIchaelle has certified hundreds of teachers in YogAlign and has practiced yoga, in some form, for 40 years.

About the author: Jonathan Landsman is the managing director of NaturalHealth365.com and host of the NaturalNews Talk Hour – a free, weekly health show sponsored by NaturalHealth365.com and NaturalNews.com. Jonathan is helping millions of people worldwide create health and physical fitness through a variety of educational and entertaining articles, teleconference calls, live shows and special events.

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    I was involved in a motor accident, 9 months ago, and spent a lot of time in bed.

    Now I have lower back pain, stiffness, swelling in knee…….

    Can this exercise help me?


  • Judy Hall

    Does Michaelle Edwards have a yoga DVD out? and if so, where would I find it?

  • L. Paynter

    The same critics are for chiropractors.
    one day they crack the spine this way
    the next day the crack it the other way around.
    making people going back to them again and again

    There is no control about what they are doing what so ever
    and I wonder whether or not they know what they are doing anyway.

    of course – Money

  • Michaelle Edwards

    Carmen, when we have been in an accident, there may be a trauma reflex in your nervous system which creates unnecessary muscle tension. My work does help clear the nervous system so that you learn to use just the necessary effort as you move about and sit during the day. Also self massage is a huge part of YogAlign and the breath work, massage, and practice of poses and movements that aligne you from center will get your body back in alignment to you can live and be pain-free. In my new book/DVD combo, you can learn how to do this yourself and gain some valuable tools for health care self reliance.

  • Michaelle Edwards

    Judy and anyone else interested in YogAlign,
    My book and DVD combo are available on my website at http://www.yogalign.com or http://www.manayoga.com
    I have an older DVD too called Yoga from Hawaii but I strongly recommend you buy the newer DVD and book to get the latest of what I have to offer.
    You do not need to be good at yoga or even do yoga to practice the basic tuneups provided in my book and method.. The main goal is to release the unnecessary tension patterning in your posture software so that you can live pain-free. The methods and poses in my book/DVD do not hurt at all to practice and in fact, YogAlign is fun and people want to keep doing it.
    When we sit or move with bad posture, it is akin to loading up our body with a software virus which affects our entire system. We do this by engaging our body on a daily basis in unnatural positions by slouching in chairs or doing forced exercises based on strengthening parts of our body. Our body has then learned how to operate by turning on anatomically dysfunctional patterns to hold these positions. However our body is mostly water and space and we can change the software and it can be erased and rebooted so your natural innate posture. This happens quickly when we combine breathing with movements in the YogAlign method.. go to http://www.yogalign.com to see the amazing before and after photos of people who do sometimes even just one session and look 20 years younger. After four or five times, people are taller, look thinner, have no more humps in their upper back and their chronic pains go away. They stop locking their knees, the head is no longer forward, the buttocks muscles are stronger and the spine is naturally aligned. The oxymoron of the whole process is that is actually takes way less effort to be aligned !!! go to http://www.manayoga.com or http://www.yogalign.com to get the book/DVD

  • Michaelle Edwards

    There is 3 trillion dollars a year spent on the health care industry in the US. So yes there is big money in your pain and sickness. My goal is to give people the tools to be self reliant in their health care. The body can heal itself when we support it to do so. When we have poor posture and breathing habits, the spine is compressed as well as hip, knee, and shoulder joints. Our immune system is weakened because our organs and glands are affected by our posture too. Depression is happening in many cases because when posture is poor, it is actually difficult to smile or feel happy. Creating good posture helps conditions like chronic fatigue because the kidney and adrenal functions are compromised by poor posture. Even digestion, elimination and sexual energy get better with naturally aligned posture.
    Since 95% of pain is a result of misalignment, the most important tool you can learn is how to align yourself using the movements of breathing. I have spent over 20 years creating this system based on my expertise as a bodyworker, yoga teacher and posture therapy work. My goal is to give people tools to heal themselves not to make them reliant and not dependent on me to fix them.
    We actually do not have a health care crisis in America, I think we have a self care crisis. If people truly eat well, exercise, and learn the tools for good posture and breathing, most would be healthy and would not need to pay others to treat their symptoms. Michaelle at http://www.yogalign.com

  • Serene

    If you begin yoga or any exercise program , and do not prepare and take it slow , it can result in very sore or sprained muscles . It is so important to prepare and not overdo it ,to avoid back injuries and end up with chronic back pain .I like the preventative tips and natural pain solutions from Imbue Body. Especially the natural pain relief patches.