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Authors: Tara Stiles

Tags: #Health & Fitness, #Yoga, #Pain Management

Yoga Cures: Simple Routines to Conquer Over 50 Common Ailments and Live Pain-Free (9 page)

BOOK: Yoga Cures: Simple Routines to Conquer Over 50 Common Ailments and Live Pain-Free
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before: Yoga cures.

Often the simplest of answers to a problem lies right in front of us. With yoga, it’s even closer than that. It’s right inside of us.

I love the universal nature of this quote from Henry Ford because it speaks to so many things, including

the healing ability of yoga. Yoga has mostly to do with what is going on in your mind. If you believe

something is possible, then it can be. If you believe something is impossible then it is for you, until you

change your mind. And the kicker is no one can change your mind for you, but you.

Yoga teaches us to be at ease in our bodies and minds. If we can learn to be at ease, our nervous,

muscular, circulatory, immune, and hormonal systems can operate beautifully and keep us radiantly

healthy throughout our whole lives. On the other side of things, when our bodies and minds are tense,

wound up, and stressed out, all sorts of things start to go haywire.

If you don’t believe you can do it, it won’t work. So I suggest you start believing in yourself. I will

guide you in the direction of techniques that can work for you but you have to do the work all on your

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own. Believing in yourself is your best cure.

Anything is possible. Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right.


Henry Ford

TOOLS OF THE TRADE

A few things you might want to have handy to assist you while you practice:

2 yoga blocks:
You can pick these up at most all-purpose stores, and of course online. Yoga blocks are great helpers for many poses. If you don’t have yoga blocks, no worries, you can substitute with some firm pillows for most of the poses.

1 blanket:
This can be any blanket that you don’t mind lying on.

1 yoga mat:
You will probably want a mat to practice on to provide some padding and help keep you from slipping.

If you don’t have a mat, you can still practice wherever you are—on the wood floor, a rug, or a carpet. Just go easy on the knees!

ONE MORE THING…

The following cures are aimed at inspiring you to ignite and maintain a lasting path of radiant health for

your life. I hope they will alleviate pain, reduce stress, release tension, and promote health, happiness,

well-being, and peace of mind in you.

These cures are not designed to be a quick fix or Band-Aid for a pressing issue, or substitution for

other care and attention to your health and well-being. Please use your best judgment always when

practicing yoga, and also when self-diagnosing symptoms.

For yoga to cure, you have to be present, honest with yourself, and in the moment. How you do the

poses is what’s important for healing, not just putting your body in the positions. By paying careful

attention to your breath and to the rest of you, you’ll be on your way to curing yourself from many of

life’s little problems and even some of the big ones. Even when a cure isn’t possible, yoga can help us

gain perspective and live our best life with whatever conditions we have.

Each cure in the book illustrates a few key yoga poses selected to have a specific effect, or a set of

effects, on your body and mind. Whether aimed at alleviating allergies, acne, PMS, or hangovers, these

cures are your springboard to fantastic health and happiness. Think of these cures as different entry

points to a life filled with energy, vigor, and zest.

These cures will work if you have patience, ease of mind, ease of body, ease of breath, and, again,

pay careful attention.

Please respect your body, go easy on yourself, and, of course, have fun. Yoga is supposed to be

enjoyable. Enjoy your breath. Enjoy your body. Enjoy your connection to yourself. Now let’s make

some yoga!

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DAILY YOGA

To reap the vast benefits of yoga it’s important to practice daily. Whether you are experiencing an

ailment that we’ll aim to remedy, or you are working toward a personal goal, or you simply want to

maintain your health and happiness, consistency is essential.

If you are new to yoga and overwhelmed by the thought of rolling out your yoga mat every day for

eternity, begin with a very simple meditation each day instead. It only takes a moment to check in with

the breath, and once you do, you’ll probably get hooked. Regular practice will soon be as natural as

waking up in the morning. Make the time for yourself. Your health and happiness is worth it. I promise,

you won’t regret it.

Warming Up

Before each routine, if you’d like to add a warm-up, I suggest spending a few minutes in seated

meditation. Follow this by a few minutes of sun salutations, so you can get centered and connected

with your breath and begin to wake up and feel your entire body. Each time you practice will feel

different, so allow your body to back off and adjust accordingly, depending on how you feel.

Seated Meditation

Sit up nice and tall, however you can sit most comfortably. Relax your shoulders, so that they are away

from your ears. Rest your palms on your thighs (face up or face down, whichever is most comfortable

for you) and close your eyes. Start to rest your attention on your breath. Watch your inhales come and

exhales go. Settle your mind in the space between. Begin to lengthen and deepen your inhales and

exhales, setting a slow, easy pace of breathing. If a thought starts to enter your mind, simply observe it

like a cloud passing by. Let the thought pass and come back to your breath. Continue observing your

breath for three to five minutes. You can use a stopwatch if that’s handy, or you could simply feel it

out and see how much time has actually passed when you open your eyes. Either way is useful.

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Sun Salutations

There are many different variations of sun salutations. This is a very simple version that is designed to

open up your entire body. Move gently between each of these poses. Feel free to add in more or fewer -

movements depending on how you’d like to tailor your practice. Some of the poses you will be

breathing through with either one deep inhale or one long exhale, and some of them you can hold for

one to five full breaths, or longer if you prefer. The most important thing is to feel your way through

the sequence, allow your body to move with ease, and enjoy the feeling of moving gently through

space. Every inhale creates space and length in your body and mind. Every exhale releases tension and

moves you into that new space. The deeper you breathe, the more you open up. So breathe fully and

deeply and enjoy the ride!

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Standing

Stand at the top of your yoga mat. Feet are parallel and slightly apart, under your hip bones. Your hip bones aren’t at the outside of your hips so make sure your feet aren’t too far apart. You can check by placing two fists between your feet. That’s about the width of your hipbones. Close your eyes and bring your attention to your breath. Lengthen and deepen your inhales and exhales and continue breathing at this nice slow pace for five full breaths. Gently open your eyes.

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Standing Arm Reach

Inhale and lift your arms out to your sides and up, filling all the space with your breath and your movement. Relax your tailbone downward and lift your chest. Keep your shoulders relaxed and down and look up while keeping your face and your forehead relaxed.

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BOOK: Yoga Cures: Simple Routines to Conquer Over 50 Common Ailments and Live Pain-Free
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