So, a yogi, a chiropractor, and a structural integrator walk into a bar. What’s the punchline? Nothing hilarious or worthy of a comedy special, although they’d probably raise a toast to the brilliant combo that is yoga and bodywork.
Many people view yoga as being packed with benefits for enhancing relaxation, improving flexibility, building core strength, aiding the digestive system, and a host of other health-supporting reasons to practice. However, your success in yoga might be limited, to a degree, by your body’s ability to rise to the demands of your practice. Even if you practiced daily and saw significant improvement in your flexibility and strength, your fascia, muscles, and skeletal structure may still be getting your way.
And that’s where bodywork comes in.
Yoga as a Supplement to Chiropractic Care
Anyone who has had quality chiropractic care performed can probably speak to the huge changes one session can bring about. The trick to chiropractic care is consistency. When you go in regularly, this module of care can improve the nervous system, correct body alignments, enhance joint mobility, and provide rehabilitative care to injuries.
Similarly, yoga can strengthen joints, increase flexibility, build core strength, and help correct alignment issues. Yoga is unique in that it focuses on stretching and strengthening all muscles in a body, which helps prevent injury and teaches your body and mind to be more mindful of movement.
Practicing in this way also helps prepare your body to more readily accept chiropractic care, making those weekly or monthly corrections stick. A stronger and more supple body can absorb chiropractic care better than a stiff, painful body. If you’re going to go see your chiropractor, we recommend warming up your muscles and refreshing your mind before your appointment with yoga. This will help your chiropractor do their job in a way that will maximize the service.
Adding Structural Integration to the Equation
Not as well-known, structural integration is a third component you may want to consider, along with practicing yoga and regularly seeing a chiropractor. Throughout your body you have something called fascia, a connective tissue that surrounds your muscles, bones, organs, and joints. It provides support and protection, but also can lead to extreme bracing and compensation issues when the fascia becomes too hardened and rigid. Structural integration is ta process of manipulating fascia to allow your muscles, bones, and joints to find proper alignment.
Developed by Dr. Ida Rolf in 1960s, structural integration or Rolfing® is rooted in yoga techniques. Dr. Rolf practiced yoga before she developed her method to gain length and balance in her body, helping her identify where her manipulations of the fascia needed to take place. She also used yoga as a tool to further develop her findings and techniques.
Today, structural integration is used around the world to help people return to their proper alignment, relieve chronic pain, gain better flexibility, and let go of countless maladies caused by restricting fascia. Unlike massage that focuses on muscle manipulation, structural integration works by releasing and reorganizing tight fascia points throughout the body. Combine this type of bodywork with yoga and chiropractor and you’ll reveal your best self.
Yoga and bodywork go together to establish effective self-care. Prioritize health and explore these supplements to your yoga practice. For more information on yoga classes, contact us today.