Kick the Adrenaline Addiction


Posted by on 11 Jan 2017

I did fast paced, ashtanga yoga for a few years. I gave it up as I wasn't enjoying it anymore, it felt harsh on my joints. I had previously used yoga to heal the back pain of childhood gymnastics, and in my ashtanga practice I noticed the back pain returning and I was not about to go into that again. Strangely enough, since giving up the ashtanga, I find I can do many of the the postures I found difficult whilst doing ashtanga with more ease and comfort that I ever could manage as a regular ashtanga practitioner.

My body responds better to gentle, regular, nourishing movement.

Putting my body under stress to do postures just released more adrenaline into my system, and that didn't help my stress levels or negative thought patterns. It made me feel lazy, incompetent, weak and stiff. This was crazy. If you asked anyone else apart from me, to label me using those polarities, they would have said I was busy, competent, strong and flexible. Anyone apart from one well known and popular ashtanga teacher who did actually call me lazy as he tried to force my short limbed body into a posture designed for Mr Tickle. As I told him he was the only person to have ever called my overly pitta self lazy, and realised that I was justifying myself to someone who cared less for me than his reputation, I decided that ashtanga yoga was not what my pitta body & mind needed to find balance.

Besides, I should be celebrating what I can do! Too much of my life had already been spent listening to people trying to put me down. I have an awesomely strong and capable body! It was shouting at me to treat it to some loving, nourishing rest.

Once I let go of those emergency holding patterns around my low back, neck, shoulders & hips, I felt my adrenaline and stress levels reduce as my rest and digest response kicked in. I started getting quality sleep.

To kick the adrenaline habit, find a really slow and boring but indulgently nourishing & gentle yoga class to go to regularly. One where you really can let go of the hurry.

If we take the hurry from everyday life into our yoga, we run the risk of doing every yoga posture by utilising those same old fast twitch emergency muscles whose activation is causing our muscular imbalances in the first place.

Sure, you will get an adrenaline high from the workout, but you can get that from body pump or aerobics with less strain on your joints.

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