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Your Body, Your Yoga goes beyond any prior yoga anatomy book available. It looks not only at the body’s unique anatomical structures and what this means to everyone’s individual range of motion, but also examines the physiological sources of restrictions to movement. Two volumes are provided in this book: Volume 1 raises a new mantra to be used in every yoga posture: What Stops Me? The answers presented run through a spectrum, beginning with a variety of tensile resistance to three kinds of compressive resistance. Examined is the nature of muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments, joint capsules, bones and our extracellular matrix and their contribution to mobility. The shape of these structures also defines our individual, ultimate range of movement, which means that not every body can do every yoga posture. The reader will discover where his or her limits lie, which dictates which alignment cues will work best, and which ones should be abandoned. Volume 2 will take these principles and apply them to the lower body, examining the hip joint, the knee, ankle and foot, and will present how your unique variations in these joints will show up in your yoga practice.
Bernie Clark has had a passion for science, health, sports and spirituality since childhood. He has a degree in science from the University of Waterloo and spent over 25 years as a senior executive in the high-tech/space industry. Bernie has been investigating the path of meditation for over three decades and began teaching yoga and meditation in 1998. He conducts yoga teacher trainings several times a year and aims to build bridges between the experiences of yoga and the understandings of modern science. He is creator of the YinYoga.com website. Bernie lives and teaches in Vancouver, Canada.
Paul Grilley began practicing yoga in 1979 after reading "The Autobiography of a Yogi" by Paramahansa Yogananada. He moved to Los Angeles in 1982 where he studied and taught yoga for 12 years. His special interest is the teaching of anatomy. He is the initial popularizer of the style of yoga called yin yoga, and patterns his philosophy on the writings and researches of Dr. Hiroshi Motoyama a yogi and scientist from Tokyo, Japan. This philosophy integrates the Taoist meridian and acupuncture theories of China with the yogic and tantric theories of India. Paul started his studies of anatomy with Dr. Garry Parker in 1979. He continued his studies at UCLA where he took courses in anatomy and kinesiology. He earned a M.A. from St. John's College, Santa Fe in summer 2000 and an Honorary Ph.D. in 2005 from the California Institute for Human Science for his efforts to clarify the latest theories on fascia and its relevance to the practice of hatha yoga.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements How to Read this Book Foreword: The History of Teaching Alignment in America
Table of Contents for Volume 1: What Stops Me? Sources of Tension and Compression Intentions
Chapter 1: You Are UniqueSo Is Your Yoga Range of Human Variations Examples of Human Variations
Chapter 2: What Stops Me? Tension Compression Sensing Tension and Compression Functional Yoga versus Aesthetic Yoga
Chapter 3: The Value of Stress
Chapter 4: The Physiology of Our Tissues Sources of Tension Muscles Myofascia Tendons Fascia Ligaments The Nervous System The Immune System The Wonder of Water Sources of Compression Bones Joints and Cartilage
Volume 1 Summary Appendix A: The Forms of Stress Appendix B: Muscle Shapes and Functions Appendix C: The Myofascial Meridians Appendix D: Facts About Osteoporosis Appendix E: The Types of Joints Appendix F: The Biomechanics of Joint Motion Volume 1 Endnotes
Table of Contents for Volume 2: The Lower Body
Intentions 1. The Bare Bones of Yoga The Planes of the Body
2. The Joint Segments of the Lower Body The Hip Joint Form The Architecture of the Hip Joint The Bones of the Hip Joint The Joint Capsule and Ligaments Muscles of the Hip The Types and Ranges of Variations Function-Application in Yoga Postures Normal Ranges of Motion Sources of Tension Sources of Compression Variation in Ranges of Motion Hip Joint Summary
3. The Knee Joint Form The Architecture of the Knee The Bones of the Knee The Knee-Joint Capsule and Ligaments Muscles of the Knee The Types and Ranges of Variations Function-Application in Yoga Postures Normal Ranges of Motion Sources of Tension Sources of Compression Variation in Ranges of Motion Knee Joint Summary
4. The Ankle-Foot Segment Form The Architecture of the Ankle-Foot Segment The Bones of the Ankle and Foot The Ligaments The Muscles and Tendons The Types and Ranges of Variations Function-Application in Yoga Postures Normal Ranges of Motion Sources of Tension Sources of Compression Variation in Ranges of Motion Ankle-Foot Segment Summary
5 Volume 2 Summary
Appendices A. List of Anatomical Directions B. Variations in the Female Pelvis C. Mechanical Advantage-Pulleys and Levers D. Flexion-Caused Impingement at the Hip Joint E. The Dangers and Benefits of Valgum or Varum Knee Orientation F. The Movements of the Foot and Ankle
Sidebars It’s Important: Beware of studies It’s Important: Who is flying the airplane It’s Important: Playing your edge It’s Important: Injuries caused by yoga It’s Important: Antifragility (or no strainno gain!) It’s Important: The value of compression It’s Important: Millimeters versus inches It’s Important: Safely stressing joints It’s Important: The value of alignment It’s Important: Remember, compression can be good! It’s Important: Co-contraction It’s Important: Are you valgus or varus? It’s Important: Don’t assume it’s your ankles!
It’s Complicated: Averages and norms It’s Complicated: Femoral neck-shaft-angle variations It’s Complicated: Stress at the cellular level It’s Complicated: Sarcomere contraction It’s Complicated: Adding sarcomeres Its Complicated: Our ground substance It’s Complicated: Other parts of our joints It’s Complicated: Which muscles cause which movement can vary It’s Complicated: Estimating available ranges of motion It’s Complicated: Femoral acetabular impingement syndrome It’s Complicated: What is a newton? It’s Complicated: Hyperextension of the knee It’s Complicated: The trochlea of the talus It’s Complicated: What causes plantar fasciitis? It’s Complicated: Arch support It’s Complicated: Where should the dorsiflexed foot point?
Note to Teachers: When students can’t go further Note to Teachers: Stress when injured Note to Teachers: Should we try to stress tendons? Note to Teachers: Sources of compression Note to Teachers: Be cautious of creating alignment cues based only on your own experience Note to Teachers: Yoga is a self-selecting practice Note to Teachers: Explore from the core outwards Note to Teachers: Customizing Classes Note to Teachers: Do not offer a correction without knowing the cause! Note to Teachers: Don’t be afraid of locking the knees Note to Teachers: Getting grounded Note to Teachers: Sicklingplantarflexion with supination Note to Teachers: Aligning the feet in Down Dog