On Wednesday, we explored the first part of the sequence I’ve been using to aide in my recovery from bunion surgery. Today, we continue with some tips for hips, hanging out, and sleeping.
Hip, Hip, Hooray!
Recline and place an original Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Ball between the meatiest part of your buttocks and the floor. Enjoy several deep breaths allowing sustained compression into the muscles. Then, rhythmically, contract and relax your gluteal muscles several times. Remove the ball from the left side and begin to cross fiber the right gluteal muscles by shifting the lower body side to side and rolling the ball between the sacrum and greater trochanter; the “ball” at the top of the leg bone. After several passes, begin to circle the greater trochanter with the ball. Be creative! Move and support your body in any way to experience a yummy massage of the multiple ligaments and tendons in this space. Reverse direction and rest on any blind spots facilitating release.
As I mentioned, I was hanging this morning. Upper body strength is a critical part of maintaining overall fitness, preventing pain, and improving performance especially when crutch-walking. (Special note: “Performance,” in this case, is not a triathlon or marathon competition, but best possible movement ‘performance’ throughout the day). By simply hanging from the bar I allow my spine the delicious treat of off-weighting my vertebral column. Simultaneously, I consciously stablize my scapulothoracic joint (shoulder girdle) and torso while also activating all of the muscles required to actually do a pull-up. That’s a lot of muscles, including, but in no way limited to; middle and lower trapezius, rhomboids, pectoralis major and minor, deltoids, infraspinatus, latissimus dorsi, teres major, subscapularis, erector spinae, external obliques and multiple arm and hand muscles. Because this is an attempt at a “pull” movement and crutch use, by contrast, is a “push” movement, they somehow compliment each other, even though each is not an actual ‘exercise’. I have not experienced any pain/discomfort in my shoulders, arms, upper back, or hands since the surgery!
Sleeping Like a Boss
One final aspect of my many weeks of recovery has included consideration of my sleeping posture. Because I basically have a push-pin jutting out from my toe, I am painfully careful NOT to catch it on something…like a sheet! (Ouch!) As well, post-op, my regular, consistent exercise came to an abrupt halt which unfavorably affects my sleep. In the Gokhale Method, Esther Gokhale L. Ac. explains stretchlying on your back as an optimal sleep posture to decompress spinal discs and nerves, improve circulation around the spine, reset the resting length of the back muscles, and improve breathing pattern. It improves the quality of our sleep while eliminating or preventing pain. Using one crutch creates some discomfort, especially on my right (crutch) side. I do all that I can striving to reduce discomfort precipitated by unsymmetrical walking.
Each morning, I do a head to toe inventory assessing how my physical body feels. Always initiating my movement session with deep breathing, I begin to move with the intention of regaining a bit of symmetry for another day of boot and crutch walking. The exercises/movements I have shared here feel supportive and work!