Posture in Parkinson’s and how yoga can help

I did a yoga class last Saturday in Victoria for people with Parkinson’s. We focused on posture and stretching/strengthening the muscles we use to stand up tall. I am so grateful to the yogi’s who came out and practiced with me!

I always take home a few things from each workshop that I teach, and I wanted to share 3 of them with you;

  • people with Parkinson’s never cease to amaze me… as we breathed, contracted and stretched together I watched everyone grow (stand) taller – seemingly more self-confident and aware of their bodies in space
  • it doesn’t matter what the specific movement is – as long as you do it with integrity and breath, you are doing something good!
  • one of the most important things you can do for yourself is relax. take a time out. we rarely give ourselves time to ‘do nothing’, that it takes a while for our bodies to relax. As we finished the class in savasana, it took 5 minutes before i saw everyone really let go and give into relaxation. this is a great practice in itself – being able to let go.
(blisstreeyoga.com)

(blisstreeyoga.com)

Two of the postures from this workshop to take home, would be:

  • Chair Pose, for leg/core strength and balance (see instructions HERE)
Utkatasana

Utkatasana

  • Halfmoon pose, for core stability and spinal flexibility

Ground your feet, clasp palms above your head, move your shoulders down your back; engage obliques and bend to the side “over a beachball”; maintain length down both sides of your body.

Slide04

Ardha Chandrasana

I am working towards having regular (monthly?) yoga workshops in Victoria (who’s up for that??!), and maybe visiting some of our neighbours on the mainland. Langley, Surrey, Richmond, Vancouver…?

Tell me in the comments below, where should I bring my Yoga for Parkinson’s workshops to next? Also, what specific aspects of Parkinson’s disease do you want to address with yoga (balance? feet? upper chest? depression?)? Much love.

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4 thoughts on “Posture in Parkinson’s and how yoga can help

  1. Hello Kaitlyn….I really like your suggestion of doing a class “over here” on the mainland. Let me be the first to sign up! I start my day with about 10 minutes of cat, downward dog, and child poses, all with breath awareness. They really are great for my morning back spasms (due to decreased dopamine levels thru the night). I’ll add chair and half-moon poses now as well. I have much gratitude for your work.
    Regards,
    Donna Dobbie
    Richmond, BC

    • Hi Donna, GREAT to hear from you! And thanks for sharing your practice with me. Waking up with yoga is so wonderful and even the smallest movements can make the biggest difference (especially back pain!). I do hope we get to meet someday, I’m looking at doing some workshops in your area and I will keep in touch. take care.

  2. Pingback: Being an informed “exerciser” with Parkinson’s | kaitlyn roland

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