Yoga Instructor May Be Vulnerable To Severe Hip InjuryBy Staff Reporter, UniversityHerald Reporter
The popularity of yoga doesn't seem like it's going to slow down any time soon. The physical benefits of mobility and stability, as well as its spiritual connection, meaning that millions of people around the world are practicing it. There is, therefore, a real need for more teachers. But now there is a warning that some yoga teachers are jeopardizing the health of their hips and joints.
Mr. Benoy Matthews, a specialist in hip and knee physiotherapy for the last 8 years and a member of the Chartered Physiotherapist Society in the UK, regularly sees 4 to 5 yoga instructors per month. He warns that he is seeing an increasing number of instructors with severe hip problems because they move their bodies too hard into "prescribed" positions even when their anatomy prohibits them from doing so.
Approximately half of the teachers he sees simply need advise on how to moderate the "prescribed" yoga positions so as not to stress their joints too much. Yet medical treatment and surgery are required for those with more advanced problems. They might need a hip arthroscopy or a hip replacement overall.
Matthews says people are confusing pain and stiffness. He advised that if there's a sensation of pinching or blocking in the groin, it shouldn't be overlooked. He added that people should know their bodies' limitations.
He admits that he practices yoga himself because it offers health benefits, but he warns that it can also cause an injury. "I don't want to denounce yoga, after all, it's been going for thousands of years. But what's achievable for one might not be achievable for others," he explains. He added that the person next to you may reach a pose all the way but it doesn't mean you have to do the same.
Mr. Matthews suggests that the number of yoga teachers does, as well as the fact that they may not do other forms of exercise, maybe the cause of these health risks. He further explained that doing any other kind of exercise, like cardio or cross-training is important as well.
A yoga teacher expressed her opinion on the matter. Natalie Gartshoren, a yoga teacher for 16 years, thinks the popularity of yoga means it's effectively a victim of its success.
She says that when you're training to be a teacher, you are not taught enough about physiology or anatomy. Natalie is 45 years old, and she is a survivor of a torn hip cartilage for 5 years now.
Pip White, a professional consultant to the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, says yoga is a great exercise for people to do, with plenty of benefits to their health and well-being. However, he added that like any other exercise, it is important to work out cautiously and use necessary safety techniques.
A 2018 survey shows there are roughly more than 1 million yoga teachers in the UK alone and more than 300 million yoga practitioners worldwide. The yoga industry is a booming market with $80 billion worth of revenue as of late.