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Experience with somatic yoga? (Or some other kind of yoga)

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by EllieBoo22, Nov 7, 2018.

  1. EllieBoo22

    EllieBoo22 New Member

    Anyone have any experience with Somatic Yoga? I was just told to try it and it was described as a practice that can help calm the nervous system. I'm looking to do more yoga as a consistent practice to help find that stillness and mindfulness for myself, and also just work on building physical strength for muscles that atrophy when I'm sidelined by a TMS attack. But I get wary of doing something "physical" as some sort of "treatment" since I know that the mind needs to know it's psychological, not physical. With yoga being a physical AND psychological practice though, I guess I just don't know where the line is. And with something like somatic yoga, if it can calm the nervous system, that can't be bad right?
     
  2. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Well known member

    Hi EllieBoo22,

    I think you might find reading Plum's success story encouraging; she attributes doing yin yoga as being a major component for her recovery http://www.tmswiki.org/forum/members/plum.1340/ (if you page down you'll see a YouTube video of a yoga teacher she follows). I would say that doing yoga or Feldenkrais or tai chi or qigong would be good to do to show your brain that (in TMS terms) there's nothing wrong physically with your body; it's another way of returning to life by doing something that you already like to do and expanding upon it...I think it's just a question of how you decide to look at it.

    I've not done Somatic yoga myself, but I have read of at least one forum member doing Feldenkrais as part of their successful recovery - and I believe Feldenkrais is a form of 'somatic' practice.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2018
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  3. EllieBoo22

    EllieBoo22 New Member

    BloodMoon thank you so much for pointing me in that direction! You're right, Plum's success story is very encouraging and I'm definitely going to look into her links for Yin yoga. I'll also look into Feldenkrais, as I know nothing about that. Thank you kindly for your response and guidance :)
     
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  4. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Well known member

    You're very welcome! :) I forgot to mention that Plum told me about Restorative Yoga - so that may be another form of yoga that you could look into (sorry to confuse the issue, but I think it's good to consider your options). There are videos on YouTube showing what Restorative Yoga is like and Somatic Yoga too, for that matter. I think anything that is 'somatic' is likely to be good with regard to TMS because they are all about releasing pent up tension in the muscles from mind/body issues. With Feldenkrais there are two types - one is where you see a practitioner who works directly on you and moves your body around and the other type involves movements that you can do on your own or in a class (again, there are videos on YouTube for the latter form).
    All good wishes,
    BloodMoon
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
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  5. Sofa

    Sofa Peer Supporter

    Sorry folks, I have been out of the loop for a bit.. Bloodmoon and you all are spot on with the yoga in my opinion. Here is the reason I think so: It requires DEEP breathing!
    Maybe it has been said, but deep breathing is time tested and proven to help just about anyone regardless of their ailment! Hello to all on the forum, and I hope everyone is doing well!!
     
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  6. EileenS

    EileenS Well known member

    I haven't done somatic yoga, but suspect it's excellent. I have just come across info on somatic healing and it's sounds like it's the reason why it's crucial to get back to normal physical activities. Peter Levine has a book about yoga and healing from trauma I think I might get.
    Off to my yoga class now.
     
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  7. EllieBoo22

    EllieBoo22 New Member

    Yes! I've done restorative yoga before and it was super relaxing I could've fallen asleep ha! At the time I had no idea about TMS and thought "yeah, this is nice but I don't really feel like I'm doing anything". Knowing what I know now however, I'm sure it was helping to calm my nervous system, which of course is everything. I'm not sure the difference between that and what I've learned about Yin so far, but I'm sure they are. I've been doing the 3 "Yogatic" Somatic Yoga videos on youtube for the past few days and definitely feel like it's helping me- it's super gentle so I'm able to pretty much still do it even when TMS symptoms are somewhat intense. You're right, from the little research I've done, "somatic" seems to be all around good for calming the nervous system- body AND mind. I'm definitely going to look into Feldenkrais next to see what it's all about... youtube is the best! Thank you!!
     
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  8. EllieBoo22

    EllieBoo22 New Member

    Sofa,

    Thank you for that insight, you're so right. It's such a simple concept, but it's remarkable how many of us have forgotten how to breathe. I live in a big city and I find myself holding my breath constantly- especially in the car and in traffic. And of course when TMS is bad. Breath is everything, must remember. *deeply inhales and exhales* :)
     
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  9. EllieBoo22

    EllieBoo22 New Member

    I'm going to check out the book- thank you for the recommendation :) I hope you had a wonderful yoga class!
     
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  10. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Well known member

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  11. BloodMoon

    BloodMoon Well known member

    So true! I also unconsciously and habitually hold my breath when I'm 'uptight' and anxious about things and also when I'm concentrating on stuff...I didn't realise about that before - not until I started to make a point of 'checking-in' with myself regularly to see how I'm feeling and reacting to things.
     
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  12. EileenS

    EileenS Well known member

    I realized last night when I went back to my library's site to request the book that it was under my search for Peter Levine, but not by him. The author is David Emerson and the title is 'Overcoming Trauma through Yoga'. Readers gave it 4 1/2 stars.

    Hi EllieBoo22,
    Yin and Restorative are very much the same and variation between the two seems to depend on the instructor. (At the two restorative retreats I've gone on, it was before I got tms and I had your same thoughts.) I do a Udemy Yin course and really enjoy it, but Yin at a local yoga studio is like Restorative.
    I sometimes do hatha yoga and regularly do vinyasa yoga, which is an energetic yoga and it is very releasing and calming for the nervous system too. I think any yoga is good because it helps centre the mind in the present and release stress from the body through movement.
    Someone on this forum, I think it was 'Plum', suggested doing the Yin Yoga 'Udemy' course, so I bought it last summer. I think I paid only $9.99 (Cdn $) and it is excellent. 'Yin Yoga for Flexibility & Stress Relief' by 'Kassandra Reinhardt'.
     
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  13. EllieBoo22

    EllieBoo22 New Member

    Thank you EileenS for the book info and explaining the difference between Yin and Restorative, although it sounds like they have more similarities than differences! And yes, I followed Plum's recommendation for that same teacher Kassandra and I think I'm going to try one of her free online videos today and see how it is. I haven't done much yoga with any consistency for years, but when I did take some classes a while back it was always constantly moving and sometimes very intense. I took classes at a nearby studio and one of the classes I stumbled into was probably way too advanced for me. The teacher had us do push ups between each pose and I got to a point where I nearly threw up. To be honest, it kind of pulled me away from yoga at the time, although I am aware this was a special situation and most yoga is NOT like that. Really looking forward to trying a more calming form of yoga as I really think it's exactly the kind of practice my nonstop body and mind need.
     
  14. EileenS

    EileenS Well known member

    Lol, I went to one of those classes with constant push-ups last week so I know what you mean! When he said,"Take your mats to the wall and do a handstand if you want." I thought,"Not unless you want to call 911 for me!" You were probably in a Vinyasa intermediate or advanced class. Vinyasa has lots of push-ups. I do a beginners Vinyasa style class 2x a week so I didn't feel like throwing up, but I was very tired at the end!
    Yin and especially Restorative is nothing like that. Hatha yoga is also a good class if you find Yin and Restorative too slow as long as the instructor encourages people to do things as their own pace. Hatha is the foundation of all the yoga poses and one has to make sure that they aren't pushing the poses to compete with others, remembering that competition with others is the opposite of what yoga is about.
    Have fun!
     
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  15. EllieBoo22

    EllieBoo22 New Member

    Hahaha yes! I must've been in an advanced class... at the time it felt more like some weird version of crossfit than yoga! Oh yes I love that, good reminder and so true. I do remember feeling competitive at times in yoga class which is so ridiculous in hindsight. It's that overachieving personality type of mine... I'm working on it. Always a work in progress :)
     
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  16. Sofa

    Sofa Peer Supporter

    Competitors at heart will find ways to compete at ANYTHING, lol
    +rep to all of you...
     
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