But maybe two or three days later we still don't feel right. We might have stiffened up or still be unable to walk properly. We may feel somehow out of balance. But these things wear off eventually, don't they? Well, sort of...
So what should you do if you sprain or strain yourself?
- If in doubt, seek medical assistance. You may have cracked a bone or torn a ligament. Get checked out.
- Keep moving - once you know that you haven't done anything too serious, it is important that you try to move the area as much as possible. Even tiny circles with a sprained ankle or bends of elbows can stop the joint stiffening too much
- Drink water - remaining hydrated keeps the body systems working optimally and keeps joints 'oiled'
- Have Amatsu sooner rather than later..
Over the years I have realised that when I see people soon after they hurt themselves, I can do so much more to help them than if they come to see me weeks or years down the line. Of course, it's important that they and I know that they haven't broken a bone or badly torn a ligament or muscle and when someone is in that much pain, they have always seen a doctor first. Although using rest, ice and elevation is very helpful, a respectful technique like Amatsu gives so much more.
I'd like to share a personal story to illustrate my point.
Several years ago, when I was coming to the end of my Amatsu training, I went on holiday with a friend to the Isle of Wight for a yoga festival. It promised to be great fun - camping, bonfires, good food and lots and lots of yoga. Bliss! We arrived and were told that if we were quick, we could take part in a yoga dance class that had just started. We left the car and our bags and went straight over to the tent where it was being held. The class was wonderful and the teacher very enthusiastic and we were soon spinning and whirling around the tent. The only challenge was that the floor was made of sacking and the ground underneath was very uneven. All of a sudden, my foot went down a deep hole just as I was turning. I heard a horrible crunch and then a second later sharp pain shot up from my ankle. I could barely limp out of the tent I was in so much pain. My friend ran out to see if I was OK as I plonked myself down on the grass almost in tears. As well as the pain, I was so upset! All those hours of wonderful yoga and I wouldn't be able to do any of them.
'What am I going to do?' I said ' I think I've really hurt myself'
My wonderful friend said 'Well - you know what to do to help yourself. Do Amatsu'
So for the first time my skills were assessed!
I did everything that I had been taught for sprained ankles. I did all of the techniques I could think of and then proceeded to drink lots of water. I kept my ankle moving, rotating it as much as I could and walking barefoot for the rest of the day even though I was still limping. I rolled a tennis ball on the bottom of my foot. There was no swelling and the pain appeared to be getting less. I got into my sleeping bag that night with a sense of trepidation. How would it be in the morning? When I woke up, I moved my ankle gingerly - just a little twinge. I crept my hands down to it - no swelling. I was so happy! I managed to do all of the yoga that I wanted that weekend and after a couple of Amatsu sessions with colleagues when I got home, there was no remnant of the pain.
As you have heard me say before, over time our bodies adapt. If we can address an injury straight away, we take away some of the torsions and tensions that are bound to happen as our muscles tighten up. This means that we recover better and much more quickly - maybe needing only one or two sessions to get straight.
So the next time you have one of those accidents, if it's really nasty see a doctor. If there is nothing broken, try to keep it moving even just a little bit and if, two or three days later you're still not right - you know who to call!
I have a special 'Help, I'm In Agony!' package specifically for these issues which includes 3 treatment sessions and priority for available slots. See here for more details.
Until next time