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Irealms

Where do I start with back pain and other issues.

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Hello all, I feel that ABSS is the way to go for me but over time I have developed some problems and just need some guidance. I might not be able to describe my problem here but I'll do my best.

I wish to sit in burmese position in meditation without any discomfort in my right knee. At the moment my right knee does not reach the floor and I have to use some support underneath the knee if my right leg is outwards when sitting (I sit on a round cushion for support too). I can sit like so for up to an hour but later in the evening my knee starts hurting after sitting for a short period. So I assume that I have to increase my right hip mobility. I did some hatha yoga stretching everyday for lower back and legs but that just resulted in left hamstrings pain when trying to stretch it now. Later I started feeling this burning pain in the lower side of abdomen (both sides). So after reading a lot in these forums I realized that I should just stretch twice a week, though the yoga I did was not intensive.

The other issue I have is past sciatica that has not appeared for a long time now except as of a week ago I had my back locked in pain just from getting up off the floor which somehow increased piriformis and upper leg muscle pain. I just noticed that my strange burning on lower abdomen and also piriformis pain comes from long periods of sitting, as I also did a few days of meditation retreat at home with walking meditation inbetween sittings. I do consider contacting a physiotherapist but I can afford only to diagnose the problem at the moment and maybe do a few sessions or so.

So should I seek a physiotherapist and is ABSS suitable for developing better mobility so that I can sit in burmese at ease at some point in my life? :)

I have tried to be as short as possible, probably I don't really know where do I start at first. But I did find a lot of great information in these forums and just discovered that I have a mild form of piriformis pain. Thanks for looking!

Edit:

I forgot to add again.. That I take cold showers every other day, which I picked up some time ago. Now I know that if I've to do stetching then only when muscles are warm, might even wear something to warm it up. But I wonder how cold shower and then gentle streching can do harm or not.

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Welcome to the forums!

Lots in your post that could be addressed, but let's keep it simple. I'll start with your actual question.

9 hours ago, Irealms said:

So should I seek a physiotherapist and is ABSS suitable for developing better mobility so that I can sit in burmese at ease at some point in my life?

I can't tell you whether you should see a PT. If you know a good one that you can trust, then why not? Assuming they know what they're doing, someone who can see you and assess you in person will certainly be able to give you better advice than people on the internet.

And yes, ABSS will definitely help you get started on the path to a comfortable Burmese position. Despite the name, it is not beginner-only material. It is suitable for beginners to the system, but it will give you the tools you need to go a very long way. As an additional resource, this will not replace ABSS, but Kit also has a free video specifically about sitting for meditation here: How to sit for meditation.

Regarding the rest of your message, I will just suggest: slow down and be kind to yourself. Your body is an amazing thing, and it will adapt to allow you to do all of these things comfortably, but that adaptation will take time. It sounds like it hasn't been able to keep up with your recent demands, and now it's hurting. Back off for a while to let it recover. That doesn't mean stop moving - keep moving, but stay away from pain and significant discomfort for a while. Prioritize relaxation and rejuvenation. Light, comfortable stretching, rolling around on soft balls or foam rollers, lying relaxation, hot baths, good food, lots of sleep, etc. You can search the forum for more info about many of these things.

As for your meditation, keep sitting, but choose a position that gives you no pain (during the sit, but afterward also). There's absolutely nothing wrong with sitting in a chair. You won't be a worse meditator :) Seiza on a raised surface (seiza bench, meditation cushion on its side, etc.) can be a good option too. Lying and walking are great too.

That is enough from me for now. Kit is very busy recently, but I'm sure he'll add anything I missed when he has some time.

Again, welcome, and keep us updated :) 

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Hi Nathan, thank you for taking time to reply. I do hesitate with seeing a PT as I do not know any of them here and to be honest all the material and answers can be found these days. I guess my problem is not a serious injury or anything like that so I can just relax and do baby steps.

I am on the same page as you just said but just forgot to mention them here. I do morning meditation sitting in burmese and if time allows then I do second session sitting on a chair later that day, burmese is simply feels a lot better for my back than sitting on a chair most of the time. To me is not a problem which posture to use for meditation, I just alternate between them as seems fit. Now I've been meditating lying on the yoga mat because I had this back pain so I backed off and just let myself relax and get back to stretching once my body feels better. I do have foam roller and soft balls so will do just that.

The How to sit for meditation video is great, I actually got it a year ago and had only done it fully a month ago only. I just not sure if I have to follow it every day for an hour before meditation or I can condense it to 30 minutes long as I try to fit it in my time schedule. 

And just one more thing about lower abdomen pain on right side is that at first I thought it is something inside that is making these burning sensations but later realized it is muscles, how strange I thought as I never experienced that there before, but what makes sense is that all muscles are connected and if one is not good then others have to compensate for that and probably this is the case.

Once again thank you so much for insights :)

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20 hours ago, Irealms said:

I do hesitate with seeing a PT as I do not know any of them here and to be honest all the material and answers can be found these days. I guess my problem is not a serious injury or anything like that so I can just relax and do baby steps.

Honestly, I would probably do the same, but I'm not sure that makes it a good decision :lol: That said, if you don't mind sharing your location, someone here might be able to give a recommendation for someone to see in your area. Perhaps a stretch, but never hurts to try :) 

20 hours ago, Irealms said:

The How to sit for meditation video is great, I actually got it a year ago and had only done it fully a month ago only. I just not sure if I have to follow it every day for an hour before meditation or I can condense it to 30 minutes long as I try to fit it in my time schedule. 

Sounds like you're already doing a lot of things right! As for the HtSfM video, you definitely don't need to do the whole video daily. Once you've done it a few times, you will know which positions you need to focus on the most. Be flexible and spend what time you have where it is needed most. I created a cheat sheet for the video, which can be found here: How to Sit for Meditation cheat sheet. You can also find it linked in this post, along with other relevant comments: A personal milestone: "How to sit for meditation" video on demand download. If you've done the follow-along several times, the cheat sheet should be adequate as a reference to do the session on your own, without having to watch along.

20 hours ago, Irealms said:

about lower abdomen pain on right side

I hesitate to say anything about this pain. Experience of pain is so subjective. I would be slightly concerned about "burning" pain, but what I consider to be "burning" pain might be something completely different than what you're experiencing. But if you've determined it is muscular, that is a good sign, I think. The lower sides of your abdomen sounds like your obliques. Since you were doing yoga, perhaps you jumped into some lateral side bending or something a bit too quickly and overworked your obliques. Most (sedentary) people don't do much direct oblique work, so this would not be particularly surprising. If that's the case, it should get better with rest. But again, very hard to say anything with what little information we have.

Again, keep us updated as things progress :) 

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The cheat sheet is great! I remember long ago thinking that I might need to do one for personal preference. I just edited my first post and mentioned that I take cold showers every other day. So just have to do them other time around if planning to do stretching for keeping muscles warm.

As of pain on the sides really feels like it is oblique muscles, pain appears and stays for a few seconds a couple of times a day and does not really bother me too much, I find that lateral flexion (side bending) stretch really feels strong on sides. Also Solo hip flexor stretch can be difficult to do when the left leg is in front as left hamstring still hurts and any stretch involving stretching the hamstring is painful so for these reasons I am not doing any stretching for 3 weeks now apart from daily five stretches which I do just lightly. Piriformis feels super thight when foam rolling so doing that everyday too once or twice a day, but I use lacrosse ball for longer time. Thank you for your input.

One more thing regarding ABSS on vimeo, looking forward to start them soon (still waiting to get a chair as got none here at the moment which I find funny), I've bought the first part on Vimeo but can not find the other two parts (just had a link to part 1 for long time on my browser and used that), have they been taken off now and got done as once purchase for all parts on stretchtherapy website? I realized that I should have just gotten the whole thing.

Okay so the link I have is this https://vimeo.com/ondemand/abss1/

So to access part too I just changed abss1 to abss2.

 

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7 hours ago, Irealms said:

I find that lateral flexion (side bending) stretch really feels strong on sides

Yes, that makes sense. People often neglect this aspect - even those that stretch. Only you can judge your own pain, but for me, personally, if it felt like "safe" pain then I would probably still do some light work with side bending, if for no other reason than to explore the pain, what movements/positions produce it, etc. But that requires a lot of sensitivity and care, so perhaps best to avoid experimentation if you're not confident... or willing to hurt yourself :lol:

7 hours ago, Irealms said:

Solo hip flexor stretch can be difficult

Have you tried the couch stretch, aka wall-quad? This is a fantastic stretch for the rectus femoris, which if kind of like the first layer of the hip flexors onion. You can set it up to require very little from the hamstring - basically nothing more than a seated position would. Here is a video from Kit.

7 hours ago, Irealms said:

I've bought the first part on Vimeo but can not find the other two parts (just had a link to part 1 for long time on my browser and used that), have they been taken off now and got done as once purchase for all parts on stretchtherapy website?

I'm not sure about this, but @Kit_L or @oliviaa will be able to give you an answer!

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On 12/11/2020 at 2:56 AM, Nathan said:

Yes, that makes sense. People often neglect this aspect - even those that stretch. Only you can judge your own pain, but for me, personally, if it felt like "safe" pain then I would probably still do some light work with side bending, if for no other reason than to explore the pain, what movements/positions produce it, etc. But that requires a lot of sensitivity and care, so perhaps best to avoid experimentation if you're not confident... or willing to hurt yourself 

This is a good point, I just started with ABSS and see how my body responds and with time can adjust the "safe" zone :)

On 12/11/2020 at 2:56 AM, Nathan said:

Have you tried the couch stretch, aka wall-quad? This is a fantastic stretch for the rectus femoris, which if kind of like the first layer of the hip flexors onion. You can set it up to require very little from the hamstring - basically nothing more than a seated position would. Here is a video from Kit.

Yes, it is much easier and have a different sensation, just like this first layer feels stronger and hamstrings are not involved now so can do without discomfort.

It has been weeks now and pain on both sides are gone except for left hamstring, which I would describe as middle string pain that is still there and also feels sore (when stretching hamstring) and it is difficult to reach with lacrosse ball. I can reach it with the ball when hamstring is stretched in some way while sitting on the yoga mat plus having a yoga block underneath hamstring and oddly it gives a relaxation feeling in that hamstring muscle (precisely the start and end points of hamstring middle muscle) when pressed against the ball.

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