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2 Special Techniques Where Healing Actually Works Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

2 Special Techniques Where Healing Actually Works

2 Special Techniques Where Healing Actually Works

There are many ways you can recover after a hard workout. But there are some that are better than the rest. You are not the only one who may be wondering what these two ways are. And you could ask, why only two? Well, these techniques are special in the form of proven results. These have been taken from hundreds or thousands of people who have experienced these two and they are in general agreement that they have healed quicker. Healing is not the same as relaxing or even repairing. Healing is when your body gets stronger than before, not just back up to where it was. We commonly misuse the term, but the healing process specifically has a phase where the tears, rips, and muscle soreness is fixed and made tougher.

 

Ice and pressure

 

Many people don’t like to use heat or ice after a workout because it can feel really intense. Your body has only just finished a hard workout, your blood is pumping and you don’t need or want anything that will interfere with that. However, ice and pressure are both needed if you want to recover fast. And this type of healing actually works. The good part is, it only needs to last a few minutes.

 

You can use pressure wraps or just use a belt to tie the ice pack onto yourself. What you should do is find somewhere to lie back and relax. The ice is going to be intense and the pressure is going to make your body feel stiff around the area. You can do this in bed actually, it just solves the issue of having a frozen arm or leg, as you can tuck yourself under the covers when you’re done. 

 

2 Special Techniques Where Healing Actually Works- Mother Trucker Yoga Blog Post

 

Joint pain

 

Not many people know what a Chiropractor actually does. Take for example this service, Dr. Evan and Dr. Callan both received their doctorate in Chiropractic from Life University. But what does that mean? They use the most specific, scientific chiropractic techniques in the world. So the way they work is backed up by science. They heal joint pain above all else, but you never know, they could release some muscle tension due to their techniques. 

 

The key to this type of healing is, they, first of all, use the body’s innate ability to heal itself. This is done without the need to twist or pop your joints in order to remove the nervous system interference. This is key for the spine. They use specific and gentle adjustments instead, backed up by scientific studies. They will track and adjust your appointments so you can keep going until they see that the body has begun to heal itself due to the release of pressure. 

 

These two techniques have been shown to work. There is no doubt that ice and pressure work. It may be uncomfortable but it will only last a few minutes. Chiropractors have shown that their techniques have evolved, from loud pops to scientific-based gentle adjustments. 

 

Stress Management: How to do deep abdominal breathing

Stress Management: HowTo Do Deep Abdominal Breathing

Stress Management: How to Do Deep Abdominal Breathing

Breathing is one of those things we all do, yet we rarely think about it; when a system like the respiratory works without us having to think about it or make it happen, it’s called “involuntary.” The respiratory system has the unique ability to work all on its own without our help, unlike the muscular system, which works voluntarily.

When we breathe, we get this precious gift called life. We can survive 21 days without food, seven days without water but can only go one to three minutes without oxygen. And at the 60-second mark, brain cells are already dying. Yet after 20 years of teaching yoga (Mother Trucker Yoga’s Membership) to others, there is one thing I have come to find, many do not like to breathe. I would often notice few would appreciate the art of breathing practices (pranayama) in yoga. You could see people start to fidget, become distracted, and even get annoyed at the idea that they weren’t “doing anything” during their yoga class. Yet without the ability to breathe, nothing on the yoga mat would even be possible. 

Mother Trucker Yoga Audio Bundle

Breathing is a tool. Those that learn to harness the device and tap into its vast abilities to improve, help and even heal the body get to reap the benefits of increased vitality, health, and happiness. But time and time again, I have observed others choose pills, alcohol, and even violence to manage what we all call stress or our emotions rather than tap into this tool we are all born with and have access to us at any given time. 

Stress can alter just about any system in the body if we allow it to. 

Stress management sign mother trucker yoga blog

Stress can:

  • Raise our blood pressure
  • Increase our heart rate
  • Increase our body temperature
  • Leave us in physical pain
  • Can decrease our immune system
  • Give us stomach discomfort
  • Make it difficult to sleep
  • Can affect your libido 
  • Tense your muscles 
  • Cause weight gain 
  • Burden your nervous system
  • Leave shallow breathing

When is the last time you felt the effects of any of the above and thought you should practice deep breathing? 

When my oldest son was small, and he’d get stressed out, the first thing I would have him do is deep breathing. Three deep breaths, I’d say, and we’d do them together. He’s now nearly a teenager, and I have observed him repeatedly defaulting to deep breathing when he is stressed, angry, frustrated, or can’t sleep. He automatically uses this incredible tool we all walk around with every day but rarely tap use voluntarily. 

The average American breathes with less than 18% of their lung capacity. That’s what I like to call clavicle breathing. It’s no wonder we are a stressed-out, upset, unhealthy out of touch society. I say these are the very things I have felt before yoga and learning how to tap into my breathing. And the same things I think when I’m not in my body, using my breathing, and feeling grounded in my skin. 

How do we breathe?

The average person takes about ten breaths per minute; that’s an average of 22,000-24,000 breaths per day. That’s a lot of breathing. And when we breathe, we inhale necessary oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide and toxins that our body wants to remove. When we breathe, our lungs expand and take in air, and our diaphragm lowers and expands as well, taking in oxygen to then be distributed out to the millions of cells throughout our body that need that fresh oxygen to live. 

Dr. James Hoyt, a pulmonologist, says, “Our respiratory muscles don’t have the luxury of being out of shape.” Yet how many people can say with certainty that they use them, work them, build them like their bicep regularly? There is a saying, “use it or lose it,” and it fits here with our breathing. 

 A recent study in the Journal of Neurophysiology may support this, revealing that several brain regions linked to emotion, attention, and body awareness are activated when we pay attention to our breath.

And, also nearly every system in the body is connected to our respiratory system or breathing. 

  • Our metabolism increases when we practice deep breathing.
  • Our autonomic nervous system regulates when we deep breathe.
  • Our digestion can settle and improve when deep breathing.
  • Our muscles relax and get total oxygen, helping them not to cramp.
  • Our lymphatic systems become stimulated, hand and hand, with our immune system, both stimulated when we breathe.
  • Our body is fully oxygenated when we deep breathe.

And one of our deep breathing’s most impressive features is that it stimulates our vegas nerve. 

What is the vagus nerve?

The vagus nerve is the longest of the cranial nerves, extending from the brainstem to the abdomen through multiple organs, including the heart, esophagus, and lungs. It controls the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), which contains your relaxation response. Most people never breathe deep enough to stimulate this impressive nerve. We need the vagus nerve to be alive and working because the vagus nerve controls your mood, heart rate, digestion, and immune response. Stimulating your vagus nerve can help to regulate many functions in your body.

Vagus nerve stimulation has been linked to treating epilepsy, improving digestive conditions, reducing inflammation, and managing anxiety disorders. The journal Frontiers in Neuroscience reported in 2018 that the poor function of the vagus nerve could lead to mood and anxiety disorders. But most importantly, when you stimulate the vagus nerve, you can reduce anxiety, stress, and mood disorders. All of this can happen when you learn to breathe more deeply and more often. 

WAKE UP, PEOPLE! BREATHING IS FREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Where does your breathing fall?

Clavicle Breathers: Those that breathe only into the upper chest, throat, and shoulders. These breathers often have lifted shoulders and a tense neck. 

Chest Breathers: Those that breathe into the center of the chest. 

Abdominal Breathers: Those that breathe deep into the belly and feel their lungs and abdomen expand freely. 

We have forgotten our unique ability to help and heal ourselves. When you were a baby, no one had to tell you how to breathe, yet there you were, breathing so deeply that your entire torso was expanding and contracting every breath you took. I have listened and watched my children as infants, and now adolescents get upset and even cry only to default to their breathing to calm them down. It’s in you; you have done it; you have just forgotten how to do it. 

Deep Abdominal Breathing Technique:

  1. Sitting tall or lying down comfortably, place one hand on your belly and one hand on your heart/chest. 
  2. Exhale completely through your mouth and hear your breath move out of your body. 
  3. Inhale through your nose and move your breath deeply into your lower hand (belly) and feel it expand. Continue to move your breath up to notice your upper hand (chest) rise. 
  4. Exhale slowly move the air out, feeling your belly collapse and your chest lower (in any order). 
  5. Soften your jaw and relax your body, focus on fully emptying your belly when you exhale and fully expanding when you inhale. 
  6. Work yourself up towards a count of four counts on the inhale and eight on the exhale. 
  7. Repeat this for two to five minutes. 
  8. Anytime your mind wanders, bring it back to your breathing. 
  9. Allow yourself to hear your breath each time you inhale and exhale. 

How to do deep abdominal breathing

Continue this practice daily in the morning to wake up, when you are feeling stressed, waiting in traffic (minus the hands-on your body), or before you go to sleep to help you relax. 

You have tools to help you breathe, relax, fall asleep. The real question is, are you using them? 

Deep Abdominal Breathing Benefits:

 Various deep abdominal breathing forms have been linked to cardiovascular benefits, including increased blood flow and improved blood pressure. Deep breathing is also a helpful tool for relaxation and sleep. Taking deep breaths can also help you manage stress and improve cognitive function like brain fog and lack of focus and concentration.

If every tool you are reaching for is outside of yourself, let me ask you, have you tried the tools you were born with? The tools you were given and are the very tools that make this life possible? The tool I am talking about is your breathing. 

Try This:

For one week, practice deep abdominal breathing at least one time a day. Work to practice it at the same time each day. Set the alarm on your phone or in your calendar and make it a priority. All too often, we say something doesn’t work or help, and we have never really tried it, let alone given it the attention required to see results. 

After seven days, come back and let us know how you did. What changed, what you noticed or found. 

Now take a deep breath and start living! 

Resources:

https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/what_focusing_on_the_breath_does_to_your_brain

https://www.uchealth.org/today/understanding-breathing-and-the-importance-of-taking-a-deep-breath/

https://www.healthline.com/health/facts-about-stress#25.-Past-experiences-can-cause-stress-later-in-life

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.n

https://www.consumerreports.org/mental-health/ways-to-manage-stress/ih.gov/29593576/

 

How Photography Can Ease Stress on The Road

How Photography Can Ease Stress on The Road

Being a truck driver is far from an easy job. In fact, according to Transport Topics, all those long hours of driving in isolation can take a heavy emotional and physical toll on drivers. Given how tough and stressful the job can be, drivers are always looking for ways to manage the difficulties while they’re on the road.

Photography can ease stress mother trucker yoga blog

Image: Pexels

There are a number of ways to relax and prevent fatigue, just like we’ve previously mentioned on Mother Trucker Yoga. But while you’re on the job, one surprisingly effective solution is practicing photography. If you want to know more about this hobby and how to get started while juggling your driving day job, read on for some tips!

How Photograph Can Help with Stress

Creativity and Stress

In general, creative activities are often associated with mental benefits. True enough, NPR’s article on the brain benefits of art explains that making art can help you feel more connected to yourself and the world — thus helping to lower stress and anxiety. Again, as driving can be stressful, photography is a great fit when it comes to artistic activities that you can do on the go. After all, you can find subjects for photos almost anywhere you go, and it makes those little breaks much more worthwhile.

Photographs and Mental Vacations

What’s great about photography is that even the photographs themselves can help provide relief from stress. Studies featured on CNBC state that looking at photos can have calming effects on the brain. This is especially true if you are fond of taking photos of natural wonders and the outdoors, as these types of photos allow your brain to go on a mental escape.

Photography and Relaxation

Lastly, just like any hobby, photography can provide you with a pleasurable and relaxing experience during your idle moments on the road. What’s great about photography is the activity itself isn’t that time-consuming, allowing you to take a quick photo when things aren’t as hectic. This can be particularly great if you’re required to drive through scenic locations that give you plenty of things to take photos of.

How To Get Into Photography

What You’ll Need to Get Started

The first thing you’ll need to start your photography hobby is a camera. Adorama’s selection of cameras represents the vast options you have when choosing a device — featuring trusted brands Canon, Nikon, Sony. If you’re just starting out, the Canon PowerShot SX720 is a reliable and compact camera that’s perfect for everyday use. But if you’re looking for something more professional, the Sony a7 III Mirrorless Digital Camera takes outstanding photographs in high-resolution 4K HDR. You also have options if you want to stick to your phone camera. Wired’s list of the best phone camera accessories recommends equipment like Moment’s Anamorphic lens and the Shoulderpod G2 grip to help you take professional-grade images.

Taking Lessons

While winging it is always an option, you may also want to seek outside help when trying to learn photography. Luckily, the internet is a great resource especially for those who are starting this hobby from scratch. Firstpost’s feature on the best YouTube channels for learning photography suggests resources such as The Creative Of Photography to get you acquainted with the basic photography principles, and beyond.

Sharing Your Work

You may eventually want to share your photos with other people. There are a number of ways to do this. Platforms such as Instagram give you access to a wide audience due to the sheer number of daily users. If you’re looking for something that allows for higher quality photos, Flickr is the preferred choice of both professional and amateur photographers.

Travelers With Chronic Back Pain?

Can Yoga Help For Travelers With Chronic Back Pain?

Dealing with chronic pain and living on the road is not easy. Beyond struggling with fatigue and being away from family, many travelers and drivers have a hard time finding time for exercise.

But sitting long hours without doing counteractive activities puts a lot of strain on your body – particularly the back. Consequently, many travelers and truck drivers develop chronic back pain. 

One of the most effective ways to find relief from chronic back pain is yoga. Yoga is suitable for all levels, easy to do anywhere, and relaxes your body and mind. 

If you do not have a yoga mat, you can still practice yoga while you are traveling. There are dozens of stretches and poses you can do right from your truck or car’s seat. 

 

Signs And Causes Of Chronic Back Pain 

Nearly every person on earth will experience back pain at least once in their lives. But for those who sit long hours, the pain soon develops into a chronic condition. 

 

Here are some common symptoms of chronic back pain:

– A continuous dull ache

– Pain that moves down to the hips and legs

– Limited mobility

– Pain that gets worse with sitting

– Pain that decreases when moving or changing positions

– Pain that persists for more than three months

Although most people with chronic back pain have similar symptoms, the causes can significantly differ.

 

What causes back pain?

There are many causes of chronic back pain. The cause can impact what you should and shouldn’t do in your yoga practice. 

Here are the most common causes of chronic back pain:

 

Muscle Strains And Imbalances

Frequent travelers can experience a strain due to prolonged pressure to their lower back while sitting. When one muscle is strained, the others take over, which creates a muscle imbalance that further aggravates back pain. 

 

Herniated Or Bulging Discs 

As we age or with prolonged stress on the spine, we can develop bulging or herniated disks. 

Bulging disk happens when the disc loses its fluid. It becomes compressed, and this causes sharp pain. A herniated disk breaks through the outer layer and presses on the nearby nerve roots. A bulging disc causes uncomfortable pain but also can cause weakness and numbness. 

 

Other Issues In The Spine 

There are many other reasons why you can develop chronic back pain. For example, you may be born with or have developed a deformity, such as kyphosis or scoliosis. 

Kyphosis is when your upper back is hunched, pushing your head forward and causing strain along the spine. Long term sitting can equally cause this, so it is vital to be aware of good posture and stretch regularly. 

Scoliosis is when the spine curves to the right or left. It may be slight by just a few degrees, but for others, when not taken seriously, it can cause a lot of pain and discomfort. 

Many people have found relief from these conditions in yoga. Still, it’s of the highest importance to be correctly diagnosed before you start your practice. Ensure that you seek educated guidance from a teacher or guide who has the experience, understands the body, and will take the time to explain the how’s and why’s to you. Seeking a skilled professional will ensure safety while practicing and a deeper understanding of your own body. 

 

How Yoga Helps Drivers With Chronic Back Pain? 

Yoga is a clinically backed method for combating chronic back pain. 

It increases muscle strength, especially in the torso. As you develop a stronger back, core, and chest, you will maintain a healthy posture.

Yoga also increases your range of motion. Lack of flexibility is a frequent cause of back pain and is a common concern in those who travel a lot. 

Finally, yoga calms you down and helps you to manage stress better. Beyond being problematic on its own, stress can further aggravate chronic back pain. 

If you never practiced yoga, it would be best to start with a studio class when you can, then take what you learned to start your self-practice on the road. 

 

How to Practice Yoga On The Road?

One of the best things about yoga is that you can do it anywhere.

Traditional yoga requires you to have a flat surface and a mat, but there are also some poses you can do in your seat. If you’re interested in those – lookup chair yoga poses. 

Travelers with chronic pain yoga props Mother Trucker Yoga blog post

Here are additional tips to prepare you for practicing on the go:

–       Have a bag with everything you need – pack comfortable workout clothes, a yoga mat, and maybe some props like straps and blocks. No time or space for a yoga bag? No problem. You can do many stretches in your jeans and boots and use things you have like a towel or belt as a strap. 

–       Schedule your practice – we are more likely to do something if it’s in our schedule. Try to designate at least 10 minutes for your sessions every day. Every little bit adds up. A stretch here, a pose there. Don’t be caught in the mindset of needed to designate a block out 30 or 60 minutes to exercise each day. The most important thing is to do something. 

–       Find online videos, like our platform designed perfectly for truck drivers and anyone else who lives on the road. Our easy-to-access online membership site is full of short, easy-to-follow videos showing you how to stretch, move and breathe right from the driver’s seat, sleeper, and right outside the cab of your truck or vehicle. Especially in the beginning having an educated teacher to guide you on video ensure that you do the stretches and poses safely and correctly. 

– Pack your pain relief cream, don’t forget to apply a soothing topical pain relief cream to those muscles that you have now woken up. A stiff body can feel like a glow stick cracked open to using when you start stretching again. The body has become stiff and can appear a bit sore after you first begin. Using a pain relief cream can help reduce the discomfort of your new routine if your muscles get a little cranky.

 

Check out some of our other great content: Neck Pain: 7 Ways to Drive Pain-Free 

banish stress instantly for truckers mother trucker yoga blog

4 Poses to Banish Stress Instantly While Traveling

Stress can be overwhelming and even debilitating. It can cause headaches, muscle tension, difficulty sleeping, and irritability. Obviously, we all know that stress isn’t good for us physically or mentally. So, how do we banish stress in our every day lives?

As a yoga teacher, I encourage others to live a life where they can stay grounded, focused, balanced, and content. Yoga has helped me a great deal with handling stress and the side effects of stress. It helps to relieve tension by keeping me focused on my breath rather than all the thoughts racing through my heads.

Whether you are at home, work, or somewhere in between, yoga is a great way to find stress relief. So, to help you on your journey of finding ways to banish stress, here are three of my favorite yoga poses.

4 Poses to Banish Stress Instantly While Traveling

Heart Opening Pose Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

Heart Opening Yoga Pose – Shoulder and Upper Back Stretch

This pose not only relieves pain in my upper back and shoulders; I can feel my mind and emotions melt when I do this. This heart-opening pose is one of my go-to poses after a stressful day when I can’t sleep or help relieve the tension of carrying life on my shoulders. As I work to widen my knees slowly, I feel relief to feel such space (even if it doesn’t look like it). The freedom of my body letting go into the safety of the floor for a few minutes is all I need to feel more like myself.

Constructive Rest Pose Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

Constructive Rest Yoga Pose- Reduce Back Pain

Constructive Rest pose is a simple pose to relax and separate from the day. It diminishes back pain and can ease the immediate discomfort mentally, emotionally, and physically life can bring about. Lying on your bed, widen your feet slightly wider than your hips and let your knees fall together and completely support each other. If your knees do not touch naturally, then place a pillow or rolled towel between them so your legs can completely relax. Do this pose on your bed or the floor and focus on your breathing or listen to some relaxing music or guided meditation.

Seated Forward Bend Traveling Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

Seated Forward Bend – Complete Stretch from Foot to Forehead

 

Stress - Version 2 Seated Forward Bend Yoga pose Mother Trucker Yoga Blog

This pose is often used in yoga therapy to help manage depression. It is also known to soothe headache and anxiety and reduce fatigue. The feeling of bending forward eases the mind. Try to deepen your breathing during this pose and hold for one to five minutes. This pose brings me full circle to the simplicity that I am okay the way I am something we all can benefit from when stress steps in.

Be gentle to yourself so that life can be gentle back to you. Never force yourself into a forward bend, especially when sitting on the floor. With each inhalation, lift and lengthen the front torso slightly, with each exhalation release a little more fully into the forward bend. If you are new to this pose, it helps to hold a strap around the feel. If you are incredibly tight, place a rolled-up blanket under your knees for added support. The more you relax in this pose, the more naturally your body will open up.

You Are Worth It

Don’t overthink it. Sometimes you don’t have the time or the mental discipline to jump up and get a workout in, or strike a yoga pose. I get it. However, what I have discovered is that if you do make the time for yourself, you will see how yoga can help you physically, mentally, and emotionally. You are worth it and you owe it to yourself to make time for you. It can feel that if we work ourselves into the ground that we will somehow win an award. But the only award you will be winning is one of disability and mental uneasiness. I am telling you that it is OK and vital that you take care of you, and you can do that starting with just a few minutes a day right in the cab of your truck. 

If you want to get professional, inspiring, functionally-safe classes all in the comfort and privacy of your own rig. I invite you to check out Mother Trucker Yoga Online Studio Platform. No stress, no hassle, no sitters, and no fuss. This is not just another fitness program showing you moves from their gym where you try to figure out how to make this work in your truck.–it’s a fresh approach all done in and around the cab of the truck! I know that I know you will enjoy it. 

If you are experiencing stress right now, here are some other helpful resources:

10 Steps to Setting Goals as a Truck Driver

Benefits of Meditation- Simple Ways to Start Meditating

The 13th Step of Addiction Recovery