Yoga and Chronic Illness

Yoga International featured a woman who teaches yoga and who, like me, has fibromyalgia. Her experience closely mirrors my own. Click here to read about how yoga helps alleviate the symptoms.

In three respects, my experience diverged from the woman featured:

  1. On days when crutches or wheelchairs are necessary I don’t see how headstands are – but the monstrous disease does wax and wane.
  2. She doesn’t address how still, “restorative” poses are very difficult and challenging when in pain. Sometimes the body is better off moving because pain in a warm body in not as gripping and breathtaking. Other times, restorative postures are alternated with more active postures. Yoga teaches you to be aware of your body and responsive, whether you’re dealing with an illness or not.
  3. She also speaks of “flare-proofing” with certain precautions. In my experience, there is no flare-proofing. The behavior she outlines is still important; you do your best to minimize damage from the random onsets. But sometimes the bad times just hit and wreck havoc. Her sense of control and “proofing” again flare-ups belies her acceptance of surrender.

To read of my own experience with yoga and my disease, click here.