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Friday, January 13, 2012

Vinyasa Yoga and Lupus

Those dealing with an autoimmune condition involving the joints, such as Systemic Lupus and Rheumatoid Arthritis, may find the desire to start an exercise routine more of a challenge. More likely than not, you must deal with stiffness and pain on top of just the lack of energy and time to stick with a program.  Two gentle and wonderfully effective types of exercise for those with joints that fight us every step of the way are swimming or yoga.

Swimming is fantastic, just try to use a pool where the temperature of the water will actually feel pleasant and not cause achy backs to stiffen up even more.  Yoga is a program you can do in the privacy of your own home, year round, at your own convenience.

The first misconception you have to get past is that yoga involves pretzel like motions impossible for people who already have difficulty with flexibility.  One of the most important things a Lupus or Arthritis patient has to realize is that they have to keep moving.  You have to work through the stiffness or like any machine you'll lock up altogether.  It may take everything you've got to start and then actually finish the session, but once done you'll realize it is a good hurt. Learning about the importance of better posture, proper breathing techniques, and a stretched out back will greatly benefit you in dealing with your own pain management.

"Challenge your limitations while remaining sensitive to them."  That is a statement by expert and teacher of Ashtanga Yoga, Baron Baptiste.  His type of yoga is called Vinyasa, meaning it is a 'flowing of postures' that create heat and energy.  His techniques help our minds and bodies release accumulated tensions and open pathways of blocked energy, allowing life's energy to flow freely through every part of our being.  For improved health it is paramount to open up those pathways which will increase the flow of oxygenated blood to our organs.  The opening up of the spine helps release those everyday stresses we soak up like a sponge.

Baron Baptise wrote a book, "Journey Into Power" which came out in 2002. This inspiring program helps you to lose weight, increase your physical and mental strength and stamina, and develop an inner sense of calm composure. Known as 'The yoga master for the stars', his gentle approach is as apparent on his dvd workouts as is evident from the book. Power vinyasa yoga is described as meditation in motion. Poses are not the complicated twists often associated with yoga. His gentle, encouraging voice guides you along every step of the way, with alternatives for the harder moves.

 There is the website with an abundant source of activities and information, but if all you want is the exercise dvds, they can be found on shopping sites such as amazon, ebay or google, Available are a number of great dvds and even vhs tapes from back in the 1990's that are from beginner to intermediate.

Baron Baptiste Foundations of Power Vinyasa Yoga
Baron Baptiste Soul of Strength
Power Yoga level 2 The Next Challenge