If the song “My Neck, My Back” makes you immediately think of your daily aches and pains (instead of what the old school RnB classic intended), then it is probably time to do something about it.
Time is flying this year, yet so many people are still trying to keep up with the last year’s shifts in the working world. Many businesses got shut down and shaken up, so some individuals are still adjusting and returning to working life, many are working from home, or the events of 2020 made some people consider significant life and work changes. Whatever your workspace may look like, the majority of people will experience some form of back pain or discomfort in their life. Whatever the severity, if back pain is common for you, then a way to ease this could be calmer then you think.
Glenn Horder is a Yoga instructor at Planet Fitness, who has been working with people with differing degrees of scoliosis, and associated pathologies, in conjunction with Physio’s and other Health Professionals to try and identify approaches to manage the impact of their conditions.
Glenn pinpoints when he started realizing how his Yoga classes and lessons could help people. “When a student came to a class 4 years ago, with degenerative scoliosis, quite severe, and had been in daily pain for over ten years. It was imperative that I learnt everything I could to deliver classes or sequences of movements to alleviate the symptoms and hopefully to generate corrective measures for her,” says Glenn.
Glenn was able to refine what he learnt and used that knowledge to aid the wider community, as it became quite clear that many people were coming to his yoga classes for the benefits it posed for their scoliosis, general back pain from their working life, and many other spinal related problems.
So how can Yoga help with back pain? “Depending on the issue, yoga offers functional movement and gentle release, learning to do things different, and in some cases Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilisation (DNS),” says Glenn. DNS is a rehabilitation approach that stimulates the brain and controls human posture and movement, which many of the yoga positions replicate. Unsurprisingly, your back pain is often related to our mental state and stress levels.
We often carry our emotional baggage into the workplace, not realising the psychological effects that could be adding to the psychical pain we are feeling. Stress causes tension, and tension creates stiffness, soreness, headaches and directly impacts your mental health.
“Don’t underestimate the power of the mind. If you focus on back pain, you will feel more pain, however, if you can subtly shift your focus, calm your mind and body, create movement designed to either stabilise, free up or create better alignment, then the body will feel that, and the mind will see it. Both help to evoke the feeling of less pain in the body,” says Glenn.
The physical benefits of Yoga to help alleviate back pain are monumental- Yoga increases flexibility, corrects your posture, protects your spine and strengths your muscles…just to name a few. The shift in the Fitness Industry to focus more on mental health directly correlates to why you should try a Yoga class. Yoga celebrates the human mind by concentrating on breathing, helping with relaxation, lowering your stress levels without adding any stress on your joints, and just gives you some peaceful time to focus on yourself uninterrupted.
Planet Fitness runs Yoga with Glenn at their Lambton location, but also has more incredibly experienced Yoga instructors who run classes in Belmont and Charlestown. If you’re on Urth Tranining, then sign up to a class using the PF Newcastle App today.
Written by Gjenae Rosekelly