Stiff muscles and how yoga can help

People often think that bringing relief to a stiff neck and shoulders might involve lots of rolling our heads around but we do very little of that in my yoga classes. Often stiff muscles are weak muscles, so I wanted us to think about building strength in this part of the body, especially the upper back. Also, it’s more helpful to stretch the neck in tandem with arm and back movements than to move the head in isolation.

We explored that in my yoga classes online and in person in South Kerry this last week. We’ve also had a go at a few different versions of side plank pose (see photo for one of them). This is such a great pose for spinal strength (all the way up into the neck) & we can work with it in lots of ways. We had a go at the version in the photo this week, but also used a wall, rather than the floor to take our weight. Anyone who has issues with any of their joints from wrists up into the shoulder, should find that using the wall is less scary and might be the version to stick with. It also helps to get the technique right and to feel how we might keep our shoulders open and strong in the posture. Then we can take that knowledge into trying the posture on the floor.

If you’d like to join my online classes, I open for new members at the beginning of each month. See here for more details.

The teacher demonstrating modified side plank pose
Louise in modified side plank.