Practicing through injuries

Yoga-related injury or not, what this dedicated man is going through makes my injuries in the past look like a paper cut. Broken femur, a surgery, and yet this guy is still practicing. You gotta give him a bravo for that. [youtube=!]

When going through an injury, yoga-related or not, many of us would tend to back off the practice. Yes, for the first few days or few weeks after the injury, depending on the severity of it, you will need to rest. But what I have found is that the practice itself can help accelerate the recovery process. Not only will practicing yoga help regain some of your muscle strength and provide fresh blood supply (hence oxygen and other nutrients) to the area of injury, it will trick your brain into thinking that you are fine. The body tends to want to protect the area of injury, and your mind also does tricky things telling you that you should be afraid of certain activities because you got injured that way initially.

It's a difficult feat to overcome this fear, but this all ties into the practice of yoga. Yoga requires courage, because after all, you are peeling away your external layers and looking within you. You may or may not like what you see or what you feel during this process, but overtime you learn that all of these things will pass. Nothing in this world is permanent. All animate and inanimate things continue to change and evolve, whether you like it or not. You are a different person from who you were one second ago, because some of your cells would have died during this one second and some new ones generated. Even the sun and air are different with each passing second. The wheel keeps turning, and we are all just a tiny cosmic speck in this greater macrocosm.

Anyways, coming back to the topic of injuries. Be not afraid of them! They are your greatest teachers, and you would see your practice in an entirely new perspective. And because I am feeling particularly inspirational today, here's another video of a disabled veteran who regained his mobility through yoga. My favorite line from this video:

"Just because I can't do it today doesn't mean I can't do it tomorrow..."