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The Practice with Clara Method to Decrease Low Back Pain

Unlike fitness and workout routines, yoga aims to supplement your lifestyle by strengthening and lengthening the muscles and connective tissues to enhance overall mobility.

How we move depends on how we take care of ourselves; we all have a signature style of movement that’s influenced by various external factors including but not limited to activity level, diet, location, relationships, work, and habitual patterns. 

Spinal health and mobility is a crucial component to how we move and breathe as we age. Wear and tear on the body are inevitable, especially if we partake in extreme activities or perform the same habitual routines with our bodies repeatedly. Examples of habitual routines include sitting at an office desk, carrying your child on a hip, cycling to and from work, lifting heavy objects, carrying serving trays, and so on. 

These active habits create imbalances in the body. We remedy imbalances in the body through intentional exercises such as strengthening and stretching. 

A healthy spine equates to a healthy body!

Back strengthening AND lengthening support spinal mobility.

Lessen low back pain

The Practice with Clara method supports low back pain with three simple steps: stretch, strengthen, rest & recover.

Layering these three unique practices into your workout routine will lessen the chance of injury and keep your spine strong and supple. 

1.

Stretch and lengthen the muscles around the spine. 

Lengthening the muscles around the low back creates space around the sacrum and spinal column. More space means enhanced mobility, so we feel supple as well as supported in our low back. 
Tight hips and gluteal muscles may affect the low back as these are the muscles that attach around the sacrum and lower spine. When muscles are tight, they shorten and contract; this may cause the body to become imbalanced as the muscles pull against the connective tissues and bones. For example, if we have tight hip flexors (aka, the psoas), we may experience lower back and hip pain. The psoas is located deep within the core and attaches to the spine and hip. By stretching the hips, we create length and space to avoid tension and pain. 
 
Here are the main muscle groups to stretch to ensure space and length in the low back:
  1. Hips – rectus femoris, iliacus, psoas, iliocapsularis, and sartorius muscle.
  2. Buttock –  gluteus maximus, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus. 
  3. Side body – quadratus lumborum, latissimus dorsi, tensor fascia latae.
 

2.

Strengthen the muscles around the spine to provide support to the low back.

Supporting the low back means strengthening the muscles along the spine. The core and back muscles become weak when we sit for long periods—and we are more of a ‘sits’ culture now than ever before! Stronger core and back muscles stabilize the pelvis and hips to decrease the risk of injury.

Strengthening the low back body and core muscle groups benefits athletes or individuals who train in other areas, such as runners and cyclists who depend on a stable core to support the activity. 

For example, a cyclist who sits on a bike for many hours must maintain proper posture in the upper and lower back and shoulders to avoid injury. A strong core and associated stabilizing muscle groups are necessary to maintain proper posture for the ride’s total duration. 

Here are the main muscle groups to provide strength and support in the low back:
  1. Core – traverse abdominis, internal and external obliques, rectus abdominis, erector spinae.
  2. Back – lats, rhomboids, trapezius, erectors. 

3.

Recover and rest; give your body time to recuperate.

Any well-trained athlete will tell you that days off are vital to your overall health and progression. In the yoga practice, the most important pose is savasana; during rest, the body shifts from an active to a passive state where cellular regeneration is possible. 

The longer the savasana, the better! And similar restful practices such as meditation, yoga Nidra, and body scan work to heal the mind and body during recovery. 

Ways Meditation Prepares the Mind and Body for Recovery: 

  1. Meditation works with the vagal tone, which is the activity of the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve connects to the body’s primary organs, including the stomach, liver, heart, lungs, and brain, and controls the heart rate. By breathing deeply, we influence the vagus nerve and slow down the heart rate. A slower heart rate calms the body’s vital processes, including the busyness of the mind.
  2. Theta waves, which are the brainwaves associated with healing and the powers of the subconscious, are released during meditation, dreaming, and deep sleep. When theta waves are more active during meditation, it’s possible that the mind and body experience rejuvenation and growth. Theta waves help prevent burnout and healing from mental and physical stressors and are the source of our more creative and intuitive processes. 
  3. During meditation, the release of feel-good hormones, serotonin, and dopamine may help with managing anxiety and intense emotions. The lessening of the stress hormone cortisol reduces tension and angst.
  4. Meditation boosts the immune system by decreasing the stressors on the body. When we hit the burnt-out zone, our immune system takes the hit and causes the body to become inflamed as a means to protect itself. Stress causes the body to stay in fight or flight mode, which affects the mind and body, causing anxiety, inflammation and other diseases. Meditation shifts the body from fight or flight, the sympathetic nervous system, into rest and digest, a function of the parasympathetic nervous system. It’s in rest and digest mode that we can recover and restore to a more balanced state. 
  5. The muscles relax when we meditate. Where yoga actively stretches to release the muscles, meditation creates space for muscles to soften and relax. Deeper breathing and stillness slow the body’s processes down, so we might passively release any tension we’re holding in the body or mind.

Yoga to support the low back

On Practice with Clara, you choose from a selection of classes that vary in style, length, and level. We take care of the planning and preparation, so all you have to do is set up your yoga mat and select the class that suits what you need on any given day. 

 

Join Practice with Clara

New members get 7-days FREE!

Sign up for a recurring subscription and get access to hundreds of different yoga classes and join the weekly LIVE yoga class.

Take these three classes to create space, strengthen, and restore:

 

Back Release creates space in the hips and side waist to create space in the lower back.

A quick grounding floor sequence to create space in the lower back and calm the nervous system.
The whole class is doing various hip and side waist openers on the back, ending with a seated pranayama (breath work) and neck rolls.
 

Strengthen the core stabilizers to support the low back in a Core Flow yoga class.

Based on Forrest Yoga’s core sequences, this short class was designed to build heat and create core activation. If you’re practicing inversions on your own, this short flow is recommended to do before going upside down.
Also recommended before a vinyasa practice to bring more awareness into your core for stabilization. 
 

Ocean Meditation has a calming effect on the nervous system.

Recovery and rest are essential aspects of healing, so take a moment to be still and breathe into your body. 
 

Try the Yoga For Low Back Pain playlist on Practice with Clara. 

 

 

The Myth of Low Back Pain

 

Low back pain is a natural, recurrent issue in most human beings.

No matter how old you are or what you do, everyone experiences some form of low back pain. 

It’s a myth that you will never experience low back pain if you are healthy and active.

Pain in the low back may indicate an imbalance, or it may be a strain from activity. 

It’s important to listen to your body; don’t ever compare yourself to others when it comes to your health.

No two bodies are the same; no two people move and breathe in the same rhythm. 
Assess how you feel, observe your body’s sensations, and consult a physician or trainer who’s well-versed in the body and how to treat injury. 
 

Benefits of daily yoga practice:

 
⦿ Lengthen and strengthen muscles and connective tissues. 
⦿ Improve range of motion and rotation.
⦿ Support spinal health, circulation, digestion, respiration, assimilation, and elimination.
⦿ Improve physical and mental wellbeing.
⦿ Enhance attention and refine focus.
⦿ Stabilize physical body as well as emotional fluctuations.  
 

Join Practice with Clara

New members get 7-days FREE!

Sign up for a recurring subscription and get access to hundreds of different yoga classes and join the weekly LIVE yoga class.

✧ Join the Community ✧

Our community boasts yogis from countries all over the world who gather and co-create the spaces we share on the Practice with Clara platform.

Join a community of over 1.3k yogis from around the world in the Practice with Clara Facebook Group

· Share your feedback

· Seek help and motivation from the community

· Discuss and receive input on yoga challenges and injuries

· Cultivate a global community

· Exclusive access to content and upcoming events

· Bring your ideas and questions to the Practice with Clara Ambassadors 

Take a LIVE yoga class with Clara each week and join hundreds of yogis worldwide. 

· Ask Clara questions in the live Q&A after class

· Participate in a class with Clara and the community

· Put in your request for a specific class

· Build to a peak pose in a vinyasa-style sequence

· Learn modifications for injuries

· Receive how-to guides to advance your practice

More Opportunties on Practice with Clara

See the History of Our 30-Day Yoga Challenges 

Take a look at the past 30-day yoga challenges. 

Read the history of the 30-day challenges with the past partnerships, themes, interviews with professionals, and more. 

Join an Upcoming 30-Day Yoga Challenge

See when the next 30-day yoga challenge is hosted to join the LIVE yoga & meditation classes.

Check out the events page to learn more. 

Are you looking for more opportunities to practice yoga, for free? 

Check out our Free Yoga page to see the latest offerings. 

Choose from three unique, free, offerings: 

30-day challenge
7-day series for beginners
7-day series for advanced vinyasa yogis 

✧ Community Feedback ✧

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✧ Frequently Asked Questions ✧

1. What is the Practice with Clara Membership & App?

Practice with Clara is an online platform and Apps that allow you to take your yoga with you anywhere, anytime! With hundreds of classes in various styles, including Hatha, Vinyasa, Restorative, Yin, Prenatal, and Meditation, there’s something for everyone at any level of the practice. The Practice with Clara Membership provides a monthly or yearly subscription package with the first 7-days free for you to experience the courses. 

2. How is the Membership Different from the YouTube Playlists?

A membership to the Practice with Clara Apps provides:

  • Access to the members-only library of yoga classes
  • Weekly LIVE classes with Clara
  • Unique events and workshops
  • Downloadable assets including:
    • Monthly Calendars
    • Journaling Booklets
    • Spotify Playlists
  • Access to a community of yogis worldwide 
  • Q&A sessions with Clara
  • & much more!

Clara’s YouTube Channel provides carefully curated playlists to introduce you to the free programs and yoga challenges for you to get a taste of what’s offered and commit to your wellness!

3. What Do I Get When I Join the 7-Day Program?

The 7-day programs include: 

  • 7-Days of Vinyasa Yoga Intensive
  • 7-Days of Yoga for Beginners

These programs provide a weeks-worth of yoga classes to ignite your yoga practice and cultivate a new, healthy habit. 

When you sign-up for one of these programs, you’ll receive:

  • A welcome email to the program from Clara
  • A class each day for 1-week
  • Curated Spotify playlists to accompany each course
  • A calendar to track your progress
  • Access to the private Practice with Clara Facebook Group

These programs are free with no hidden costs or fees; PLUS, you’ll still receive the 7-day free trial on the Practice with Clara Apps once you complete the series!

4. What Do I Get When I Join the 30-Day Yoga Challenge?

We host quarterly 30-day yoga challenges that are always free for all members of Practice with Clara. Each yoga challenge is themed based on the season. We’ve provided our inaugural challenge, Reconnect | A 30-Day Yoga Challenge, as an email series for you to try to test your physical and mental discipline and endurance!

What you receive in Reconnect | 30-Day Challenge

  • A welcome email to the program from Clara
  • A class each day for 30-days
  • Curated Spotify playlists to accompany each course
  • A calendar to track your progress
  • A journaling booklet to incite self-reflection 
  • Access to the private Practice with Clara Facebook Group

This program is free, anytime, with no hidden costs or fees, PLUS you’ll still receive the 7-day free trial on the Practice with Clara Apps once you complete the series!

 5.  I Want to Try the App, What’s Next? 

Great, we’re so happy to have you join our community!

To set up the Practice with Clara App, here are your next steps:

6. I’m Injured, Pregnant, or New to the Practice—Can I Join?

YES, no matter where you are at in your practice, there are classes for you on Practice with Clara. 

We’ve created playlists for beginners and those who are new to the practice.

we also have the Prenatal Collections with classes from the 1st – 4th trimesters that I created when I was pregnant with my daughter. 

Finally, I offer PLENTY of modifications and suggestions based on injury in all the platform classes. 

The biggest thing is to always listen to your body; your body is the greatest teacher.

Join Practice with Clara

New members get 7-days FREE!

Sign up for a recurring subscription and get access to hundreds of different yoga classes and join the weekly LIVE yoga class.