By Diana Ross, E-RYT 500, Co-Founder of Breast Cancer Yoga.
Slow and easy is the theme for the “Let It Rise” pose. When you begin to introduce overhead or even arms up after cancer treatments the arms, shoulders and chest begin to stretch and open. It is common to have frozen shoulder or limited range of motion ROM so a pose like “Let It Rise” is perfect to start with. Using the breath to lift and lower arms, also being mindful not to overarch the lower spine is important for the success of the yoga pose.
- Improves blood and lymph flow through contraction and relaxation of arms
- Increases function of immune system by improving drainage of lymph nodes
- Increases shoulder ROM (range of motion)
- Reduces fibrous adhesions and scar tissue
- Stretches rhomboids
- Promotes synchronized breathing
- Gently stretches arms, shoulders and pectoral region
- Elevates chest,encouraging deeper respiration and rhythmic breathing
- Opens the intercostal muscles and separates the ribs
- Opens hips in crossed leg position
- Begin in any comfortable, crossed-leg, seated pose. Please use appropriate props to ensure comfort of knees. Sit higher, on a yoga block, bolster or blanket, if you need to. Holding a block with arms straight, lower hands to ground by feet.
- INHALE, bring straight arms to a comfortable height (directly in front of chest) or overhead, building range of motion (ROM) in the breast region and/or shoulder region. Make sure your shoulders stay relaxed and your spine remains lifted. The use of the block may cause an over arch of the lower spine so be aware of maintaining a long spine.
- EXHALE, lower arms and yoga block to center of chest, or all the way down.
- Continue raising and lowering block. Rest when needed.
To experience the benefits of yoga for breast cancer, it is essential that you begin with simple, gentle yoga movements. You should also consult a doctor before you begin practicing yoga. It is also necessary that you follow a yogic diet that consists of a mainly vegetarian diet to enhance the benefits of yoga.
About Diana Ross: E-RYT 500 restorative yoga teacher, survivor that cares and founder of Breast Cancer Yoga. Diana is making a difference with Breast Cancer Yoga therapeutic products designed to support you emotionally and physically during breast cancer . We want to give you the attention and personal service you need so please email us at email@example.com if you have questions.
Try Breast Cancer Yoga’s extra gentle yoga DVD for breast cancer recovery and lymphedema management.