This past weekend, my older brother fell from the mountain while skiing at Kirkwood (in Tahoe). Perhaps we have superman genes, because the only “souvenir” of his 80 foot free-fall is a tibial plateu fracture. Seriously. A few bruises here and there, and one fracture. For ski bunnies and anyone who does any activity/movement not on their own two feet, wear a helmet. Always.
Are you familiar with the saying, “Fish for a man and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and feed him for a lifetime”? My mom, who is still in recovery mode from her shoulder injury, is headed to my brother’s house, VooDoo floss band in hand, to help him deal with the swelling both before and after his surgery (and the million other things we need our moms to do when we’re peg legged).
This also made me think of the discussion of yoga and injuries that have been swirling around the media for the last few years. Currently, Matthew Remski, a yoga therapist and writer from Toronto, has been interviewing people in the yoga space and discovered what should not surprise many of you –people get hurt in yoga. (You can read his super insightful blog here) I think a bigger conversation we should be having is about how lack of movement is causing injuries for many people in the activities we think of as “healthy”.
When you think of the crazy stunts that people are trying to pull off in every facet of movement, from workouts (have you seen Instagram lately??), to running insanely long distances, to circus yoga tricks, I think we’ve gone a bit overboard. Yes, our bodies are amazing and we should be celebrating them, but, we can’t take a body that has been seated and squat-free for the last 27 years and put it in the bendy-est of backbends because it looks pretty. Yes, running 100 miles in one bout is AMAZING and quite the feat, but will it serve you 20 years from now?
Just because you can, doesn’t mean you SHOULD.
This is a brilliant sankalpa that has come up in many a YTU training. Sure, I could attempt to put my feet behind my head, but will it benefit me? Will I be happy I did it every day for 25 years when I’m 85? Or will I be dealing with the aftereffects of constantly over stretching ligaments and tendons that will never repair themselves to their once pliable state?
So, as you go on with your weekly movement activities, be it gym, yoga, running, or lifting, ask your self, “is this activity serving me”? If you can’t answer it with a YES, then maybe you should reevaluate why you are doing it. Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should.
PS. Always wear a helmet and tell someone where you’re going.
PPS. If you have any recommendations for STELLAR physios in the Sacramento area, please email me!