Our brain is the control center of all our activities. It controls all the mental and physical functions and most importantly our perception of the world. Any injury to the brain can negatively impact these functions and impairs our ability to live a normal life. A concussion is a very serious injury that affects the brain.
Concussion is normally a sports injury affecting men and women who play football, extreme sports and other high impact games that run the risk of head injuries or sports related traumatic brain injuries (TBI). But it can also be caused due to a fall or accident. According to The Center for Disease Control (CDC) an estimated 1.6 to 3.8 million people in the United States suffer from sport related concussions.
The effects of concussion include damage to brain cells and chemical imbalance in the brain and body. It is very important to get ample rest as your brain needs time to heal. If you suspect you have a concussion get help right away. If your doctor thinks that you have a concussion, then they might order a CT or MRI scan to check for internal bleeding, swelling and other problems.
Concussion can cause memory loss, dementia, depression, personality and mood changes etc. When recovering from a concussion, all physical activities must be stopped. As your brain needs rest, you should take a break from even normal activities like reading, watching TV, using a phone or computer. In addition, eat healthy wholesome foods, drink lots of fluids, get plenty of sleep and definitely avoid alcohol.
All this is well and good. The questions that obviously comes to mind is if there a way to mitigate the impact of TBI’s or concussion? The answer is yes and Yoga can help. According to Sadhguru, a yogi and today’s foremost authority on yoga, building resilience of the ligaments can serve as a preventive for such type of injuries. He says that even if the muscles are strong, strengthening the fundamental fabric of the body is crucial and that can be accomplished with certain type of Hatha Yoga practices.
Hatha yoga practices involves stretching of the body which in turn builds resilience in the ligaments. While regular exercise build muscles, it does not do much for the ligaments. The entire skeletal structure is held together by the ligaments. So stretching strengthens the ligaments and can cushion the body in the event of a fall.
There is a certain practice of Hatha Yoga called Angamardhana – which means gaining mastery of the limbs and other parts of the body. It is a fitness system rooted in yoga, which can invigorate the system and build strength and resiliency. This practice involves using your use your own body weight and momentum to increase the flexibility of the body over a period of time . Over time you will attain a completely different level of physical strength and tenacity. That is what makes this practice a good fit for athletes.
If you practice sports that puts you at risk for concussion, then yoga or Angamardhana may be the answer. It can build your system in such a way that it enables you to bounce back from a fall faster with fewer repercussions.
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