Saturday, April 27, 2013

Investigating the Benefits & Risks of Headstand: Part 1

Part I of a three part series on headstand.  

by Kathleen Summers, MD, PhD, RYT500

A new student arrives to class. After a brief exchange of names, a conversation begins:

Teacher: Do you have any injuries or issues?

Student: No injuries, but, just to let you know, I don’t do the headstand.

Teacher:  Why not?

Student: I’m not comfortable with it, and I don’t think it’s important.

Teacher: Well, it IS important. You’re just not there yet.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Are You Practicing the Right Kind of Yoga for Your High Blood Pressure?

High blood pressure is extremely common in older adults.
Many doctors now recommend yoga to treat stress-induced high blood pressure. That's great, right? Yes and no. Yoga is a great way to calm the body and mind, but not all styles are created equal, and neither are all poses. Consider that few doctors understand the range of yoga styles on offer today, that the yoga community provides contradictory guidance on the relationship between yoga and high blood pressure and that high blood pressure is the leading risk indicator for stroke and heart disease, and it becomes clear that it's wise to proceed with caution. If you (or one of your students) have high blood pressure, read on to learn what you need to consider before reaching up into that first sun salutation.