Yoga & Rock Climbing / Yoga Injuries


I haven’t been posting much at all for several months now, not due to neglect, but due to yet another injury. This time, I re-injured my left shoulder and am having a terrible time recovering. Today I found out the results of an MRI–no tears in my shoulder, but some wear is visible in my rotator cuff. The official diagnosis is shoulder bursitis, which is chronic (and painful!) inflammation of the shoulder bursa, a sack of synovial fluid that is supposed to reduce friction and help joints move smoothly. When the bursa becomes inflamed, though, it actually increases friction and can even cause the surrounding tissue to wear and tear. The swelling also results in a painful locking sensation in the shoulder when you try to lift your arm into certain positions.

I’ve been doing physical therapy and have taken ungodly amounts of Ibuprofen, but none of this is really helping. If anything, the pain, grinding, and locking in my shoulder has gotten worse in the last two months. I tried doing some yoga, thinking that it might help, but it just made things worse. So, needless to say, my yoga practice and rock climbing are both on indefinite hold right now.

Instead of climbing and yoga, these days I’m doing a lot of running. This is not my usual activity, and I’ve found myself struggling to get into it. One reason it’s been so difficult is that my cardio-vascular health is probably not all that great. Yoga and rock climbing just don’t get your heart rate up high enough to deliver serious cardio-vascular benefits. So, in a strange way, this injury might be doing me a lot of good, since it’s getting me to run a lot. I’m running 3-4 miles, about 5 days a week. For me, this gets my heart rate up, keeps me from going totally stir crazy, and actually is helping me to improve my fitness in ways that yoga and climbing never did.

I don’t want this to turn into a running blog, or a blog about whatever I’m up to, so I decided to take a hiatus until I can get back into my yoga practice. Hopefully, my shoulder bursitis will resolve itself pretty soon, and I can get back onto the yoga mat. Most likely, I’ll be practicing at Dhyana Yoga in Philadelphia this next year. (Thank you to everyone who sent me studio recommendations!) Once I get back to my practice, I plan to start posting on this blog again. Until then, Namaste!

25 thoughts on “MIA

  1. Sorry to read about your injury; I myself sustained a rotator cuff injury in my late teens; When I began practicing yoga, I found this old injury rearing it’s head in uncomfortable ways, mainly in limiting my range of motion and being very weak, compared to the other side. I’ve also found my shoulder opening and relaxing the “scar tissue grip” as I call it, so, I continue to gently work into my shoulder while being careful to push it in harmful ways…easier said than done! I wish you a peaceful recovery and love to your shoulder!

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