The importance of rest

This has now happened to me twice. About one or two months ago, I hurt my wrist and had to take a little rest. Although I was frustrated during these days it probably did me good. This time, it was worst. Somehow, I’ve been over-optimistic about the spring weather here. I’m simply not a winter child and as soon as the sun shines I want to walk around in summer clothes. 

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So I went out for a lovely spring walk with a nice cold wind blowing on my neck as I had abandoned my loyal winter scarf together with the hat and gloves. During the evening flow class, boom! I suddenly had a severe neck pain. So bad as I got cold that I couldn’t do any headstand. It just got worse. I had pain when I went to bed. I put some Chinese Yunnan spray and tiger balm hoping the night would do it.
Next morning… I couldn’t move my head! Even 1 cm. This is what they call a blocked neck, it was like cement, unmovable. Little did I realise how important the neck was. Everything is connected, it is kind of logic. But wait until you can’t move your head. Everything becomes so difficult. So I had to stay in bed all day. I’ve never had it this bad before. I can’t remember I had this kind of issue as a child. Is this yet another “adult symptom”? At least in Sweden, I remember hearing about all adults talking about neck, shoulder and back pain.
You don’t realise how happy you are to be able to move your body until you can’t do it anymore. Three days followed and I steadily got better. Scarves, staying warm, hot bath, an incredible quantity of Yunnan spray and tiger balm did the trick. I’m not sure how easy it is to get outside of China but I can warmly recommend this Yunnan spray. It’s some kind of plant-based spray against pain. A little bit as football players use when they hurt themselves. You first use the red one when you have the accident, then you continue to use the white one. I’m definitely bringing some to the teacher training. Even if I have some wrist pain, I spray some and then I can practice again in the evening. 

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Every time I have these 3 days of rest, I’m thinking that maybe I will feel weak when I go back to practice. I feel restless and sluggish and have a hard time to focus. Maybe this is the real addiction of yoga. You get addicted to feeling good and fresh about yourself. You realise the benefits when you stop. Now maybe you think that 3 days is nothing. Well these days for me it is. That’s 6 missed practices. There is so much that can happen in 6 sessions.
I went back to practice yesterday and felt fantastic. Again, in contrary to what I thought, I felt stronger than ever! It’s such a nice feeling. So I guess it’s not the end of the world. And it’s really important to listen to your body, not push too hard and enjoy that yoga journey. I now start to understand when yogis say it takes many years of practice. The goal is not to be able to be able to do certain postures but  to enjoy the journey and life fully. 
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