Trapped nerve

In Bali the niggling sciatic thing in the left corner started to come back, but practising in that heat it was just annoying. Back home in the no where near as warm it got worse. At AYL with heat and help it was ok, especially when backbends were followed by a Louise super squash to put everything back.

Then a weird thing happened one day a few weeks ago when I was practising home alone, I stood up from a dropback (from a block) and I had no feeling or control of my left leg, it felt like the leg wasn’t in the hip socket, acetabulum , I couldn’t stand on it. After a few minutes the feeling came back, but since then the hip keeps locking or feeling like there’s a delay when I ask my left leg to follow the right.

I figured it’s all joined up on the left side of my lower back, Pelvis and hip, so rather than the usual massage therapy I went back to Liz the physiotherapist who treated my shoulder after the surgery. She is usually a sports team physio, so I knew she would be sympathetic to an injury caused by activity and unless it was something drastic would most likely tell me to keep doing practice.

After quite a long prodding and hip movement examination, apparently I have amazingly open, problem free hip joints, she found the root of the problem buried somewhere deep around the pesky Piriformis, Gleut area, a bit of trapped nerve, and the muscles surrounding it going solid around it.

Although the injury is the nerve being squashed, she diagnosed the root cause is still my left shoulder and the way I compensate and still subconsciously protect it during practice. I thought my arms range of motion was pretty good now, but Liz had me do a couple of movements that graphically showed just how much less range the left has compared to the right. This comes out in postures like Urdva Dhanurasana where the left arm isn’t quite under the shoulder and as I walk my hands in I tweak something in my Pelvis, do this movement 36 times a week with UD’s and dropbacks and something has to give.

So what’s the answer? Well initially it was a lot of her thumbs and elbows painfully digging in, but unlike massage where you lay there Liz had me moving against her pressure to try and free the tension. Part 2 are some exercises, movements that aren’t part of practice, a deep cross legged seated side stretch. ( I automatically sat in Lotus without thinking, Liz said “I wish I could do that! ) and a chair exercise where you bend forward in half lotus. She is going to work on the left shoulder and Lats on the left side, which should help the lower back issues in the long term.

She told me to do the exercises, keep getting on my mat, movement being much better and also use the roller and my yoga wheel.


Practice is as good as it’s been since last years operation, everything binds and I have the stamina and energy back, I’m no longer completely wrecked and I’ve added Angela’s sitting practice back in when I have time.


2 Responses to “Trapped nerve”

  1. Mike Evans Says:

    Yay – sounds like Liz is a keeper. Just finding someone who looks beyond the immediate issue and considers the whole picture is a result. These days I only seem to have a sitting practice – or mostly sitting – and then vipassana meditation. Primary gets a look-in about once a week.

    • Kevin Says:

      I only found Liz by chance when the insurance company for my arm sent me to her. It was helpful that she knew the shoulder history. I’m hoping she can give me a more long term solution to the lower back thing as well as the Hip problem I went to her for.

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