Bending over Backwards: Stay Safe in Your Yoga Practice

April 11, 2012

Backbend By Rachel Krentzman, PT, E-RYT for Active.com  April 2012

Backbends are an integral part of any Yoga practice.  The intention for backbends is to open the chest and rib cage in preparation for pranayama (breathwork).  For some, backbends are exhilarating and freeing while for others, they can be somewhat daunting and anxiety-producing.  For the first few years of my Yoga practice, I would experience back pain in most back bending postures and assumed that it was a ‘normal sensation’.  The truth is, if done correctly, backbends should be challenging but comfortable.  If you are not experiencing freedom in our backbends, it is a sign that you may be compressing our lumbar spine instead of increasing our range of motion.

Is it safe for my spine? Read more

Back Pain: Attitude and Asana

March 27, 2010

Written by Rachel Krentzman, PT, E-RYT, CPYI, for LA YOGA MAGAZINE

This was the second in an ongoing series on the therapeutic applications of yoga to appear in LA YOGA Ayurveda and Health magazine. A copy of the article can be viewed at: www.layogamagazine.com

I clearly remember the moment when shooting pain in my back sent me down on my knees, unable to breathe. I remember the numbness and tingling in my right foot – no matter how much I commanded, my foot would not obey. As a physical therapist, I knew exactly what was happening, I just couldn’t believe it was happening to me. I was young, healthy, active and a dedicated yoga practitioner. How could it be that I had herniated a disc in my lower back? The fear surrounding any significant injury began to surface. My main question was, “Would I be able to stay active and do the things I love, the activities that fulfill my soul and inspire me daily?” Read more

Four Simple Yoga Exercises for Back and Neck Pain

March 25, 2010

By Rachel Krentzman PT, E-RYT, CPYI,

Written for www.active.com

Have you ever experienced a nagging pain in your shoulder blade area that just won’t go away? How about chronic neck tension while sitting at your desk? Do massages feel great but a few hours later the pain returns?

Upper back and neck tension are complaints that are becoming more prevalent in physical therapy offices. With the increasing use of computers, desk jobs and time sitting in traffic, it’s hard to avoid these aches and pains regardless of how active you are. Read more

How Yoga Can Improve Your Fertility

March 20, 2010

Yoga Asana (postures) and Pranayama (breathwork) are instrumental in preparing the body, the mind and
the spirit for conception. Yoga can increase your chances of conceiving by working on 3 different levels: physical, physiological, and the mental/emotional. This article includes a video.

Read more

Hanging out the Yoga Way

March 19, 2010

By Rachel Krentzman, PT, E-RYT

For www.active.com – March 19, 2010 – The Great Yoga Wall™

Many of you may have experienced both the exhilaration and peaceful state that a yoga practice provides. One of the reasons we feel so good after doing yoga is because it is a balanced physical practice designed to open the spine in every direction.

This is also what sets it apart from your average sport. Most sports are a function of repetitive movements that can often cause repetitive stress on the body or tightness in certain areas because of the posture adopted during that specific sport. In yoga it is said that “you are only as old as your spine.” In other words, as long as you Read more

Yoga Therapy for Athletes

March 26, 2009

By Rachel Krentzman, RPT, RYT, CPI
For Active.com

I remember the moment well–the moment where the shooting pain hit me in my back and sent me to my knees, unable to breathe. I remember the numbness and tingling I felt in my right foot, and no matter how much I commanded, my foot would not obey. As a physical therapist, I knew exactly what was happening. I just couldn’t believe it was happening to me.

I was young, healthy, active and a dedicated yoga practitioner. How could it be that I had herniated a disc in my lower back? The fear surrounding any significant injury began to surface. The main question in my mind was, “would I be able to stay active and do the things I love doing, the activities that fulfill my soul and inspire me daily?”

Read more

You and Your Hamstrings

March 27, 2008

By : Rachel Krentzman, PT, E-RYT

One of the most common complaints that I have encountered among yoga teachers and practitioners alike is an intense, aching pain in the bony area deep in the buttocks crease, also known as the ‘SITS” bones.  It is usually painful to deep pressure or when sitting on a hard surface and tends to be exacerbated by forward bends (uttanasana and parsvottanasana) and deep lateral angle bends (virabhadrasana/warrior II and Utthita Parsvakonasana).  Usually, these symptoms are due to a Hamstring Tendonitis, an inflammation around the attachment of the hamstring tendon to the pelvic bone.  This little ache can eventually become a chronic and disabling condition if left untreated, but with the proper knowledge and alignment can be prevented and cured completely.  Unfortunately, most athletes and yoga practitioners will tolerate the pain until it eventually becomes unbearable and does not allow them to continue their usual level of activity. Read more