Yoga injury is connected to the ego.
How many of you go to what you perceive as the last stage? Because you want to prove that you can do it.
But what if there is a misconception? For example, you think the ‘last stage’ of tree pose is to get your foot on the upper thigh. When actually the pose is a hip opener. The pose is about lengthening the thigh bone out of the socket. And you achieve that lengthening wherever your foot is.
What happens when we try and get to the last stage too early? I was obsessed with forearm stand. I used to practice and practice. I wanted to be able to kick up effortlessly into a beautiful forearm stand.
And yes, I find it easier now. But I think that’s because I’m stronger from my yoga practice, not because I repeatedly practiced forearm stands for months. And I pulled my right hamstring from all that jumping when I wasn’t warm enough. It’s still tender now. I have to modify my practice to accommodate it.
Is it worth it? No. Can I see that now? Yes.
Yoga does not cause injury. We cause ourselves injury. Because of our ego, because we want to see progression.
It is so important to let that go. It’s just noise. You will perform an asana when your body is ready to perform it, and there will be no strain.
That’s not to say don’t practice difficult asanas. They are fun and exciting, and if that’s what pulls you to yoga, then great.
But yoga is not gymnastics. We cannot let our mind get ahead of our body. We must learn to control our ego and be safe.