Yes to Backbends!
“If you have a good spine, the gods will chase you. Nobody has psychological or emotional problems, everyone has a bad spine." - Bikram Choudhury
I love it when our Yoga teachers build their classes around a theme in which they focus on one of our problematics area. My least favorite are definitely backbends but at the same time they are, aside from hip opening, what I need to work on the most. But that’s just the thing, isn’t it? Those postures and areas we don’t like to work much are those that we get the most benefits from and which make the biggest difference. And thus I decided to do little research on backbends in and attempt to change my attitude towards them. And this is what I’ve found...
Those things that we do on daily basis and give any thought to such as lifting up our kids, reading newspaper, typing on computer and more, consist of us banding forward in a way that is unsupported. This can then cause prolonged poor posture which leads to cause or aggravation of back and neck pain, pressure on vital organs which then prevents them from proper functioning and it also badly effects person’s self-esteem.
And just imagine that this all could be avoided if we take our time to do some backbends during our day. As with everything else in yoga and life, we need to take care of our body by making sure that we counter-act all those movements and postures we do and that is why the backbends are so important - it instals balance to our body.
But there are other physical benefits that we gain from back-bending which are worth the mentioning. Back-bending stimulates the sympathetic nervous system which helps to prepare our bodies for action, it realigns the spine, help with digestive function and eliminate constipation. On top of that, backbends also stimulates all of our chakras and help us to relieve a stress.
I hope this helps you as much as it helps me - doing that which I don’t like make suddenly more since when I know how good it is for my body.