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Leading British physiotherapist Benoy Matthew warned yoga teachers against permanently damaging their hips because of intensive yoga practice.
Recently, an increasing number of yoga teachers have been seeking treatment for serious hip problems. Most of them ask therapists for advice on how to modify yoga positions to avoid injuries. However, some have developed advanced hip problems that require treatment and surgery. According to Matthew, these problems happen when people frequently do yoga poses that are difficult for their body structure. Because people have different body types, not all yoga positions are suitable for everyone.
Yoga teachers run the risk of developing hip problems as the demand for yoga classes increases. One instructor said that the high demands are causing some teachers to burden their bodies with heavy workloads. Some instructors even have to teach five times a day, while some hold classes even on weekends.
Matthew said that because instructors do yoga quite often, they tend to disregard other forms of exercise like cardio or cross-training. He suggested adding a variety of exercises to lower their injury risk.
In addition to this, Matthew also recommended that new yoga teachers undergo physical assessment. This will give them awareness of their body type and help them identify what types of yoga positions are appropriate for them.
Pip White, another physiotherapist, emphasized the importance of understanding personal limitations to practice yoga safely and fully enjoy its benefits. UK yoga practitioners may seek help from the British Wheel of Yoga, which governs yoga groups in England. The organization offers programs that include anatomy lessons that can help students and teachers modify yoga positions.