Yoga Relief for Neck & Shoulder Tension

Yoga Southampton Neck Shoulder Pain

As a Yoga Teacher in Southampton the most common grumble I hear from my students is neck and shoulder tension plus referred pain such as headaches. I’m always diving into my yoga tool box for the perfect yoga poses and yoga relief for neck and shoulder tension.

Neck and shoulder tension can be a source of much frustration for many of us. So often, especially at the end of a long hard day we really “feel” our neck and shoulders and this is just the time to get yourself to a yoga class in Southampton. The most common cause of neck and shoulder pain is stress, either emotional or physical stress, or sometimes just a combination of both.  With hectic lifestyles and the constant strain of stress our physical bodies often pay the price.

The trapezius muscle group, which runs from your neck to shoulders, carries the most stress of anywhere in your body but what causes this tension?

 

Yoga Southampton Neck Shoulder Pain

Common Causes for Shoulder and Neck Pain

Stress

We often carry emotional stress which manifests itself in our physical bodies as muscular pain

Pulled muscles

Moving too quickly, or placing undue physical stress on the muscle can cause tears and pain

Bad Posture

Sitting or standing, with the head slightly forward, can cause stress on the trapezius muscle group. We call this the computer chin which juts forward.

Pressure

Carrying an object that puts strain on the muscle can result in aches and pains. Examples are bras, backpacks, or shoulder bags.

Holding positions

Positions that are held for a period, consistently, can cause stress in the trapezius muscle group, computer monitors in the wrong position or sleeping in the wrong position, are a few of the most common reasons.

 Yoga Poses to relieve Shoulder and Neck Pain

Using Yoga as tool to relieve physical and emotional stress is just one of the many ways we can heal ourselves. Taking the time to relieve the stress of shoulder and neck pain can help to feel rejuvenated in the whole body.

Try thYoga Southampton Neck Shoulder Painis short video with yoga poses from Neck & Shoulder Tension. This video is just 6 mins long, try doing it daily for a week and see what happens . . .

If you’d like to learn and experience more I’m teaching a 2 Hour Yoga Workshop for Neck and Shoulder Tension in Southampton on Saturday 7th October at 10am. More information here.


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The Quest for Equilibrium – Yin Yoga Southampton

What is Yin Yoga – by Laura Green | Yin Yoga Southampton

As human beings we are hard wired to instinctively seek out equilibrium; through either the involuntary responses of the body or voluntary actions of the mind. You feel too hot – your body’s involuntary response is perspiration whilst the voluntary action of the mind tells you to open a window; you feel too cold – your body shivers and your mind tells you to get a jumper.  This is an essential necessity for survival. Yet we are finding more ways to override this wisdom of the body for temporary gain with little regard for the long term consequences. Read on to learn more about how yin yoga can help or attend a yin yoga in Southampton with Laura.Yin Yoga Southampton

Example: you’re working long hours under the pressure of deadlines, you feel very tired, involuntarily the sleeping centre of the brain kicks in, your eye lids get heavy, your reactions slow down, your concentration dwindles etc; the voluntary mind should make you go to bed and sleep but instead you get a strong cup of coffee. The caffeine kicks in and overpowers the body’s involuntary response. Short term result – we bravely soldier on and complete the task. This becomes a rinse and repeat cycle of always wanting, doing and achieving more – this is the yang cycle. 

Yang without Yin leads stress, adrenal fatigue, anxiety, burnout, heart attacks, fertility issues, digestive issues etc. Equally Yin without Yang leads to lethargy, depression, isolation, weight gain etc.

Yoga teaches that equilibrium comes from balancing opposites. Yet we live in a world with preferences, likes and dislikes and have lost any sense of equanimity. So time and again we are drawn to the things we like, prioritise, or value highly and disregard the rest, taking us further out of balance. Generally speaking, both society and we as individuals value the Yang over the Yin, the Active over the Passive and the Masculine over the Feminine. Whereas we need to balance these opposites, we need both the Yin and the Yang. It is the practise of embracing equanimity in search of equilibrium.

How Yin Yoga Works to Balance the Body

‘Yin Yoga’ is slow-paced with postures that are held for long periods of time. These long held postures are done when the body is cold and not warmed up.

At first this can seem very unusual but it serves the intention which is to focus less on stretching the muscles and more on working into the joints, ligaments, tendons and fascia of the body. It is less about ‘stretching’ these tissues as they don’t have the same elasticity as muscles, but more about ‘stressing’ them through holding them under tension for longer periods which overtime will improve the length, strength and thickness of the tissues.

Just like Thai Yoga Massage there is a focus on stimulating the movement of prana along the Meridian lines and a close connection to Tradition Chinese Medicine. The golden rule of Yin Yoga through the eyes of Patanjali is sthira sukham asanam – the postures must be steady andYin Yoga Southampton comfortable. Yin Yoga also draws inspiration from Daoism and applies one of its key philosophies ‘Live in harmony with the way and you will benefit. Struggle against the way things are and you will suffer’.

Yin Yoga generally targets the lower body with only around 26 official postures, but the principles can be applied to a variety of postures. It is a deeply healing practise both mentally and physically.
Why not try a Yin Yoga class to experience full balancing effects for yourself?

Lx

For Full Class Timetable Click Here

For Workshops Click Here


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Why Should You Stretch Your Hips?

Hip Opening Yoga Southampton

Hip opening yoga postures are some of the more requested in class (along with shoulders!). Yet they’re also the postures with the most grunting & groaning. We love to hate them it seems. So why should you practice pigeon pose and similar yoga stretches for the hips?

1) We sit way too long! How many hours have you been sat down for today alone? When we sit our hip flexors and psoas muscle shorten, when we sit for long periods this causes tightness and stiffness in the hips. 

2) Tightness and lack of range of motion in the hips can put too much strain and load on other areas of the body such as the spine and the knees causing pain and discomfort.  

3) Yoga tradition explains that we store negative feelings and pent up emotions in our hips which can create blockages and obstacles in our life. Move and stretch this area to release repressed emotions. 

4) The hips correspond with the Sacral Chakra, Svadhisthana. This chakra represents our creativity and sensuality. When the hips are more open and spacious so we can feel more creative, be inspired to explore new ideas and insights.  

5) Your hips are a full 360° joint with over 20 muscles that cross over them! So it takes some care and attention to really get in there and make some change! You have the inside hip muscles aka adductors, outer thigh muscles aka abductors, hip flexors at the front of the hips and deep rotators. So for a full clear out, include a quad/hip flexor stretch to the front, an inside hip/groin stretch and a variation of pigeon.    

Check out my free online video focusing on hips, quads and glutes.

See you on the mat yogis !

Laura x

For Full Class Timetable Click Here


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